“I want to live with Him day by day” by John Newton

“I hope your soul prospers.

I do not ask you if you are always filled with sensible comfort: but do you find your spirit more bowed down to the feet and will of Jesus, so as to be willing to serve Him for the sake of serving Him, and to follow Him, as we say, through thick and thin; to be willing to be anything or nothing, so that He may be glorified?

I could give you plenty of good advice upon this head; but I am ashamed to do it, because I so poorly follow it myself.

I want to live with Him day by day, to do all for Him, to receive all from Him, to possess all in Him, to live all to Him, to make Him my hiding-place and my resting-place.

I want to deliver up that rebel Self to him in chains; but the rogue, like Proteus, puts on so many forms, that he slips through my fingers.

But I think I know what I would do if I could fairly catch him.

My soul is like a besieged city: a legion of enemies without the gates, and a nest of restless traitors within, that hold a correspondence with them without; so that I am deceived and counteracted continually.

It is a mercy that I have not been surprised and overwhelmed long ago: without help from on high it would soon be over with me.

How often have I been forced to cry out, O God, the heathen are got into thine inheritance; thy holy temple have they defiled, and defaced all thy work!

Indeed it is a miracle that I still hold out.

I trust, however, I shall be supported to the end, and that my Lord will at length raise the siege, and cause me to shout deliverance and victory.

Pray for me, that my walls may be strengthened and wounds healed.”

–John Newton, The Works of John NewtonVolume 2 (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1988), 2: 122-123.

“When I hear a knock at my study door, I hear a message from God” by John Newton

“I remember to have heard Newton say, when speaking of his continual interruptions,

‘I see in this world two heaps, of human happiness and misery.

Now, if I can take but the smallest bit from from one heap and add to the other, I carry a point.

If, as I go home, a child has dropped a halfpenny, and if, by giving it another, I can wipe away its tears, I feel I have done something.

I should be glad, indeed, to do greater things, but I will not neglect this.

When I hear a knock at my study door, I hear a message from God.

It may be a lesson of instruction or perhaps a lesson of patience.

But, since it is His message, it must be interesting.'”

–Richard Cecil, “Memoirs of the Author, with general Remarks on his Life, Connections, and Character, by the Rev. Richard Cecil,” The Works of John NewtonVolume 1 (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1988), 1: 76.

“May the great Teacher make every Scriptural truth food to our souls” by John Newton

“Let us give ourselves to the study of the Word, and to prayer. And may the great Teacher make every Scriptural truth food to our souls.

I desire to grow in knowledge, but I want nothing which bears that name that has not a direct tendency to make sin more hateful, Jesus more precious to my soul, and at the same time, to animate me to a diligent use of every appointed means, and an unreserved regard to every branch of duty.

I think the Lord has shown me in a measure there is a consistent sense running through the whole Scripture, and I desire to be governed and influenced by it all.

Doctrines, precepts, promises, warnings, all have their proper place and use: and I think many of the inconveniences which obtain in the present day, spring from separating those things which God hath joined together, and insisting on some parts of the Word of God almost to the exclusion of the rest.”

–John Newton, The Works of John NewtonVolume 2 (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1988), 2: 113-114.

“I derive from the Gospel a peace worth more than a thousand worlds” by John Newton

April 16, 1772

“My dear Friend,

I hope the Lord has contracted my desires and aims almost to the one point of study, the knowledge of His truth. All other acquisitions are transient, and comparatively vain.

And yet, alas! I am a slow scholar; nor can I see in what respect I get forward, unless that every day I am more confirmed in the conviction of my own emptiness and inability to all spiritual good.

And as, notwithstanding this, I am still enabled to stand my ground, I would hope, since no effect can be without an adequate cause, that I have made some advance, though in a manner imperceptible to myself, towards a more simple dependence upon Jesus as my all in all.

It is given me to thirst and to taste, if it is not given me to drink abundantly; and I would be thankful for the desire.

I see and approve the wisdom, grace, suitableness, and sufficiency of the Gospel salvation; and since it is for sinners, and I am a sinner, and the promises are open, I do not hesitate to call it mine.

I am a weary, laden soul; Jesus has invited me to come, and has enabled me to put my trust in Him. I seldom have an uneasy doubt, at least not of any continuance, respecting my pardon, acceptance, and interest in all the blessings of the New Testament.

And, amidst a thousand infirmities and evils under which I groan, I have the testimony of my conscience, when under the trial of His Word, that my desire is sincerely towards Him, that I choose no other portion, that I allowedly serve no other master.

When I told our friend lately to this purpose, he wondered, and asked, “How is it possible, that, if you can say these things, you should not be always rejoicing?”

Undoubtedly I derive from the Gospel a peace at bottom, which is worth more than a thousand worlds; but so it is—I can only speak for myself—though I rest and live upon the truths of the Gospel, they seldom impress me with a warm and lively joy.

In public, indeed, I sometimes seem in earnest and much affected; but even then it appears to me rather as a part of the gift entrusted to me for the edification of others, than as a sensation which is properly my own.

For when I am in private, I am usually dull and stupid to a strange degree, or the prey to a wild and ungoverned imagination; so that I may truly say, when I would do good, evil, horrid evil, is present with me.

Ah, how different is this from sensible comfort! And if I was to compare myself to others, to make their experience my standard, and was not helped to retreat to the sure word of God as my refuge, how hard should I find it to maintain a hope that I had either part or lot in the matter!

What I call my good times, are when I can find my attention in some little measure fixed to what I am about; which indeed is not always, nor frequently, my case in prayer, and still seldomer in reading the Scripture.

My judgment embraces these means as blessed privileges, and Satan has not prevailed to drive me from them; but in the performance I too often find them tasks. I feel a reluctance when the seasons return, and I am glad when they are finished.

O what a mystery is the heart of man! What a warfare is the life of faith! (at least in the path the Lord is pleased to lead me.)

What reason have I to lie in the dust as the chief of sinners, and what cause for thankfulness that salvation is wholly of grace!

Notwithstanding all my complaints, it is still true that Jesus died and rose again; that He ever liveth to make intercession, and He is able to save to the uttermost.

But, on the other hand, to think of that joy of heart in which some of His people live, and to compare it with that apparent deadness and want of spirituality which I feel, this makes me mourn.

However, I think there is a Scriptural distinction between faith and feeling, grace and comfort: they are not inseparable, and perhaps, when together, the degree of the one is not often the just measure of the other.

But though I pray that I may be ever longing and panting for the light of His countenance, yet I would be so far satisfied, as to believe the Lord has wise and merciful reasons for keeping me so short of the comforts which He has taught me to desire and value more than the light of the sun.”

–John Newton, The Works of John NewtonVolume 2 (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1988), 2: 109-111.

“This happy victory” – The Book of Common Prayer (1662)

“O Almighty God,

The sovereign commander of all the world, in whose hand is power and might which none is able to withstand:

We bless and magnify Thy great and glorious name for this happy victory, the whole glory whereof we do ascribe to Thee, who art the only giver of victory.

And, we beseech Thee, give us grace to improve this great mercy to Thy glory, the advancement of Thy gospel, the honour of our nation, and, as much as in us lieth, to the good of all mankind.

And, we beseech Thee, give us such a sense of this great mercy, as may engage us to a true thankfulness, such as may appear in our lives by a humble, holy, and obedient walking before Thee all our days, through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with Thee and the Holy Spirit, as for all Thy mercies, so in particular for this victory and deliverance, be all glory and honour, world without end.


–Samuel L. Bray and Drew Nathaniel Keane, eds., The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites and Ceremonies of the Church, International Edition (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic: An Imprint of InterVarsity Press, 2021), 576.

“A Collect for Peace” – The Book of Common Prayer (1979)

“Most holy God,

the source of all good desires, all right judgments, and all just works:

Give to us, Your servants, that peace which the world cannot give,

so that our minds may be fixed on the doing of Your will,

and that we, being delivered from the fear of all enemies,

may live in peace and quietness;

through the mercies of Christ Jesus our Savior.


The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and Other Rites and Ceremonies of the Church (New York: Church Publishing Incorporated, 2007), 123.

“Hourly communion” by Robert Murray M’Cheyne

“An hour should never pass without our looking up to God for forgiveness and peace. This is the noblest science: to know how to live in hourly communion with God in Christ.”

–Robert Murray M’Cheyne, Memoir and Remains of the Rev. Robert Murray McCheyne, Ed. Andrew A. Bonar (Edinburgh; London: Oliphant Anderson & Ferrier, 1894), 146.

“He loves her with all His infinite heart” by Charles Spurgeon

“God loves the church with a love too deep for human imagination: He loves her with all His infinite heart…

You may fear that the Lord has passed you by, but it is not so: He who counts the stars, and calls them by their names, is in no danger of forgetting His own children.

He knows your case as thoroughly as if you were the only creature He ever made, or the only saint He ever loved. Approach Him and be at peace.”

–Charles Spurgeon, “February 24 — Evening” in Morning and Evening (Geanies House, Fearn, Scotland, UK: Christian Focus, 1994),  121.

“The grand secret of inward peace” by J.C. Ryle

“To be without Christ is to be without peace. Every man has a conscience within him, which must be satisfied before he can be truly happy. So long as this conscience is asleep or half dead, so long, no doubt, he gets along pretty well.

But as soon as a man’s conscience wakes up, and he begins to think of past sins, and present failings, and future judgment, at once he finds out that he needs something to give him inward rest.

But what can do it? Repenting, and praying, and Bible-reading, and church-going, and sacrament-receiving, and self-mortification may be tried, and tried in vain.

They never yet took off the burden from any one’s conscience. And yet peace must be had! There is only one thing that can give peace to the conscience, and that is the blood of Jesus Christ sprinkled on it.

A clear understanding that Christ’s death was an actual payment of our debt to God, and that the merit of that death is made over to man when he believes, is the grand secret of inward peace.

It meets every craving of conscience. It answers every accusation. It calms every fear. It is written, ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace.’

‘He is our peace.’ ‘Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ (John 16:33; Ephes. 2:14; Rom. 5:1.)

We have peace through the blood of His cross: peace like a deep mine,—peace like an ever flowing stream.”

–J.C. Ryle, Holiness: Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties and Roots (London: William Hunt and Company, 1889), 364–365.

“Peace with God” by Thomas Brooks

“‘If God be with us, who can be against us?’ I answer, None, so as to deprive us of our inward peace, rest, and quiet. Though, it thunder, and lighten, and rain, and blow abroad, yet a man may be at peace and rest and quiet at home.

A man may have much trouble in the world, and yet rest and quiet in his own spirit: John 14:27, ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth give I unto you,’ ‘let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid,’ No men nor devils, no troubles nor distresses, can deprive a Christian of that inward and blessed peace that Christ hath purchased and paid so dear for.

Peace with God, and peace of conscience, are rare jewels, that none can strip us of. The world may wish you peace, but it is only Christ can give you peace, Rom. 5:1, and 2 Cor. 1:12. The world’s peace is commonly a dear-bought peace; but Christ’s peace is a cheap peace, a free peace. ‘My peace I give unto you.’

The world’s peace is commonly a sinful peace, but Christ’s peace is a holy peace; the world’s peace is a cursed peace, but Christ’s peace is a blessed peace; the world’s peace is but an earthly peace, but Christ’s peace is a heavenly peace, Rom. 14:17; Heb. 12:14, and Ps. 29:11.

Some Christians thought that others could not come to heaven if they did not eat such meats as they; but Paul tells them that the kingdom of God consists not in meat or drink, but ‘in righteousness, and peace, and joy of the Holy Ghost.’

The world’s peace is but an imaginary peace, but Christ’s peace is a real peace. The world’s peace is but a superficial peace, but Christ’s peace is a solid and substantial peace. The world’s peace is but a transient peace, but Christ’s peace is a permanent peace. The world’s peace is but a temporary peace, but Christ’s peace is an eternal peace.

It is a peace that all the world can’t give to a Christian, and it is a peace that all the world can’t take from a Christian, 1 Thes. 5:3; 1 Pet. 3:11; James 3:18; Isa. 9:6, 7; Ps. 37; Isa. 26:3, and 27:5.

When the tyrant threatened one of the ancients that he would ‘take away his house,’ he answered, ‘Yet thou canst not take away my peace.’ ‘I will break up thy school;’ ‘yet shall I keep whole my peace.’ I will ‘confiscate all thy goods;’ ‘yet there is no premunire against my peace.’ ‘I will banish thee thy country:’ ‘yet I shall carry my peace with me.’

All above a believer is at peace; the controversy betwixt God and him is ended. Christ takes up the quarrel betwixt God and a believer. ‘We have peace with God,’ Rom. 5:1. All within a believer is at peace.

A peaceable God makes all at peace. When our peace is made in the court of heaven, which is upon the first act of believing, then follows peace in the court of conscience, ‘peace which passeth all understanding,’ Phil. 4:7.

And all below a believer is at peace with him. He has peace with all the creatures. When we are friends with God, then all the creatures are our friends. ‘The stones of the field shall be at league with thee, the beasts of the field shall be at peace with thee,’ &c., Job 5:23.

The peace that Christ gives is the inheritance of saints only. It was all the legacy which the prince of peace left to his subjects, and this legacy none can take from them.

Persecutors may take away my goods, but they cannot take away my peace; they may take away my estate, but they cannot take away my peace; they may take away my liberty, but they cannot take away my peace; they may take away my good name, but they cannot take away my peace; they may take away my relations, but they cannot take away my peace; they may take away my life, but they cannot take away my peace.

I grant that the best have no perfection of peace, because they have no perfection of grace. If there were a perfection of grace, then there might be a perfection of peace; but the perfection of both is reserved for another world; and it must be granted that though sometimes a believer may want the sense of peace, the sweet of peace, yet the grounds of his peace are still fixed, certain, and constant; they are ‘like mount Zion, that cannot be removed.’

Now the grounds of a Christian’s peace are these— an interest in Christ, reconciliation with God, justification, remission of sin, adoption, the covenant of grace and peace.

Now these are always sure and everlasting, though the sense of peace may ebb and flow, rise and fall, in a believer’s heart, especially when he is a-combating with strong corruptions, or high temptations, or under sad desertions, or when unbelief has got the throne, or when their hearts are quarrelsome—for commonly a quarrelsome heart is a troublesome heart, or when they have blotted their evidences for heaven, or when they are fallen from their first love, or when they have contracted eminent guilt upon their souls, or when they are declined in their communion with God.

Now in these cases, though a believer may lose the sense of peace, yet the grounds of his peace remain firm and sure; and though he may lose the sense of his peace, yet in all these sad and dark conditions his soul is day and night in the pursuit of peace, and he will never leave the chase till he has recovered his peace, knowing that God will first or last speak peace to his soul; yea, though he has lost the sense of peace, yet he has that abiding seed of grace in his soul that will in time recover his peace, Ps. 85:8.

Do your enemies threaten to take away this or that from you, you may throw up your caps at them, and bid them do their worst, for they can never take that peace from you that Christ has given as a legacy to you, 1 John 3:9. When there are never so great storms within or without, yet then a believer may find peace in the prince of peace, Isa. 9:6.

When his imperfections are many, a perfect Saviour can keep him in perfect peace in the midst of them all, Isa. 26:3, 4. Though his sacrifices are imperfect, yet Christ a perfect priest can speak peace to his soul, Heb. 7. Peace is that never-fading garland which Christ will so set and settle upon the heads of the upright, that none shall be able to take it off.

A Christian can never lose his inward peace, either totally or finally. It is true by sin, Satan, and the world, a Christian’s peace may be somewhat interrupted, but it can never be finally lost.

The greatest storms in this world that beat upon a believer will in time blow over, and the Sun of righteousness, the prince of peace, will shine as gloriously upon him as ever. Under this word, shalom, the Jews comprehend all peace, prosperity, and happy success.

When the worst of men have done their worst against the people of God, yet the issue shall be peace, prosperity, and happy success. ‘My peace I give unto you;’ that is, that ‘peace with God and peace with conscience that I have purchased with my blood, I give unto you.’

And what power or policy is there that can deprive us of this legacy? Surely none. The peace that Christ gives is bottomed upon His blood, upon His righteousness, upon His satisfaction, upon His intercession, and upon a covenant of peace, and therefore it must needs be a lasting peace, an abiding peace.”

–Thomas Brooks, “A Word in Season,” in The Complete Works of Thomas Brooks, Volume 5, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart (Edinburgh; London; Dublin: James Nichol; James Nisbet and Co.; G. Herbert, 1867), 510-512.