There Are No Limits To His Knowledge of Me

“And just as there are no bounds to His presence with me, so there are no limits to His knowledge of me. Just as I am never left alone, so I never go unnoticed. ‘O LORD, thou hast search me and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising (all my actions and movements), thou understandest my thought (all that goes on in my mind) afar off…and art acquainted with all my ways (all my habits, plans, aims, desires, as well as my life to date). For there is not a word in my tongue (spoken, or meditated), but lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether’ (verse 1 ff.) [Psalm 139:1-4]. I can hide my heart, and my past, and my future plans, from men, but I cannot hide anything from God. I can talk in a way that deceives my fellow-creatures as to what I really am, but nothing I say or do can deceive God. He sees through all my reserve and pretence; He knows me as I really am, better indeed than I know myself. A God whose presence and scrutiny I could evade would be a small and trivial deity. But the true God is great and terrible, just because He is always with me and His eye is always upon me. Living becomes an awesome business when you realise that you spend every moment of your life in the sight and company of an omniscient, omnipresent Creator.”

– J.I. Packer, Knowing God, p.76

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The Strength of Sinful Habits

“Habits have long roots. Sin, once allowed to nestle in your bosom, will not be turned out at your bidding. Custom becomes second nature, and its chains are threefold not easily broken. Well says the prophet, ‘Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil’ (Jeremiah 13:23). Habits are like stones rolling downhill–the further they roll, the faster and ungovernable is their course. Habits, like trees, are strengthened by age. A boy may bend an oak, when it is a sapling–a hundred men cannot root it up, when it is full-grown tree. A child can wade over the Thames at its fountainhead–the largest ship in the world can float over it when it gets near the sea. So it is with habits: the older the stronger–the longer they have held possession, the harder they will be to cast out. They growth with our growth, and strengthen with our strength. Custom is the nurse of sin. Every fresh act of sin lessens fear and remorse, hardens our hearts, blunts the edge of our conscience, and increases our evil inclination.”

– J.C. Ryle, Thoughts for Young Men, p. 12