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“The Old Paths”
Christ is both the new and the living way. And being the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, he is the old path in which we must ever dwell, if we would find rest for our souls. He is the same yesterday, and today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8). We find rest and peace for heart and soul when we walk in the old paths of the faith. This is what God says to his people through the prophet Jeremiah: — “Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.” O Holy Spirit, give us grace, day by day, that we may seek and walk in the old paths of gospel truth.
If we will walk in these paths which are plainly laid before us in the Word of God, our hearts and souls shall find rest and peace. These are the things that give us peace in this world of strife and woe.
Here is an old, well-beaten path, upon which the saints of all ages have walked and found rest: — “I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isaiah 46:9-10).
Nothing is more comforting to our hearts than the fact that the God we trust is totally sovereign. There is nothing in this universe which is not governed and controlled by our heavenly Father. All that is in heaven above, in the earth beneath, and in all deep places is under the sovereign rule of the eternal God in whom we trust. What shall we therefore fear?
If I did not know that my God is gloriously sovereign in all things, I would soon lose all sanity. I will walk in this old path of divine sovereignty, because it gives me peace.
Throughout the ages, God’s people have found his electing love to be a path of comfort and peace to their hearts. It is written, “The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: but because the Lord loved you ... hath the Lord brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen” (Deuteronomy. 7:7-8).
God’s eternal love gives rest to our souls. From all eternity, God’s heart of love has been set upon his people. Child of God, doesn’t your heart rejoice in the peace of God’s eternal, immutable love, by which he chose you to be an object of his grace in eternity?
The old paths of the gospel are blood-stained paths. They are marked by the crimson of Immanuel’s precious blood. It is written, “The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). Do you walk in the blood-stained way? This is the sweet comfort of my soul; I am washed in the blood of the Lamb. To be washed in the blood is to be cleansed, pardoned, justified, and accepted with God. God said, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13). The eye of divine justice is on the blood of my Substitute, Jesus Christ; and there it is satisfied. So God’s justice passes over and refuses to punish me.
And certainly an old path of peace for the Lord’s people is the promised security of God’s elect. My heart rejoices to believe the Word of Christ himself, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish” (John 10:27-28). What do those words mean? They mean exactly what men say they do not mean. — They mean that no true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ shall ever perish!
Beware of any preacher who continually redefines his doctrine. — “Buy the truth and sell it not” is the command of God (Proverbs 23:23). Those who are not content to walk in “the old paths” are ever looking for something new and are continually revising their doctrine. They do so only for evil reasons. They can never find rest for themselves, nor minister rest to others. Wherever they are, turbulence surrounds them.
Come, my brother, my sister in Christ, let no one turn you from the old paths. — “Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.”