GLASGOW, March 1st, 1879.
DEAR MRS. THOM,
I was glad to hear from you. You seem to thrive on Highland air and Highland services. . . . Pray for us here, seek power from on high to minister and people. I read the other day that two American professors have lately shown how the power that is in the Niagara Fall may be transmitted along a copper cable half an inch thick, to the distance of 500 miles. We know how to get greater power than Niagara power from above. Do we think sufficiently on this? For read Paul's prayer, Eph. 1.: 'that the eyes of your understanding being enlightened .. . ye may know the exceeding greatness of His power,' etc.
Here is another exercise for you.
Find out eleven ways in which 'justification' is spoken of, e.g. the act of the Father,then of Christ, by grace, etc.
Study Esther and Job in connection. The former is the mystery of providence in public affairs, the latter, in believers personal affairs.
Take each chapter of Proverbs after the ninth, and set yourself to find an instance that illustrates each successive verse, e.g. 'a wise son maketh a glad father;' Solomon himself, etc.
In the twelve minor prophets note the special mission or burden of each, e.g. Hosea, the prophet of the backslider; Joel (the earliest book of written prophecies), the announcer of the full gift of the Spirit in the midst of judgments abroad.
The cold has been intense here and long continued. Our new church is very comfortable, but my voice is not what it should be, even in the new church. The Holy Spirit seems sometimes to breathe among us very blessedly. . .. Again asking to be remembered Believe me always, yours truly in the Lord,
ANDREW A. BONAR.
GLASGOW, 12th May 1883.
DEAR MRS. THOM,
There is no second baptism in the Acts of the Apostles. There is a second, and a third, and a fourth, and as many as you like filling with the Holy Ghost. From time to time the Lord is pleased to give more and more out of Christ's fulness. The mistake which some people make about a second baptism is this. They do not notice that the thing promised was a far fuller gift of the Spirit than in Old Testament times, as soon as Christ was ascended to the Father with His completed sacrifice. Whoever acknowledged this completed work of Christ was warranted at once to ask and expect the fuller gift of the Spirit. Until disciples acknowledged this completed work they got only the Old Testament measure of the Spirit. Hence in Acts xix. i-6, the question to the twelve disciples, 'Have you received the promised full gift of the Holy Spirit?' The answer was, 'We know by John's teaching that such a thing is to be, but as yet we have not heard that any of that shower has fallen.'
Upon this they were instructed in the whole truth about Christ and His finished work, and were baptized (as a sign of this) in the way Christ appointed. And then there followed the gift of the full shower on their souls. Is this satisfactory? Pray for us.Yours in Him,
ANDREW A. BONAR.
Transcribed from Reminiscences of Andrew A.Bonar D.D.
LONDON, HODDER AND STOUGHTON,
27 Paternoster Row
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