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 George MacDonald Quotes
88 Famous Quotes by George MacDonald
12/10/1824 - 9/18/1905
Also Known As:  
George Donald
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About George MacDonald

Do you think that the work God gives us to do is never easy? Jesus says that His yoke is easy, His burden is light. People sometimes refuse to do God's work just because it is easy. This is sometimes because they cannot believe that easy work is His work; but there may be a very bad pride in it... Some, again, accept it with half a heart and do it with half a hand. But however easy any work may be, it can nnot be well done without taking thought about it. And such people, instead of taking thought about their work, generally take thought about the morrow -- in which no work can be done, any more than in yesterday.

Christianity Quotes, by George MacDonald

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The pure eye for the true vision of another's claims can only go with the loving heart. The man who hates can hardly be delicate in doing Justice, say to his neighbor's love, to his neighbor's predilections and peculiarities. It is hard enough to be just to our friends; and how shall our enemies fare with us?

Christianity Quotes, by George MacDonald

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Commemoration of Alphege, Archbishop of Canterbury, Martyr, 1012 The Son of God suffered unto the death, not that men might not suffer, but that their sufferings might be like His.

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Feast of Josephine Butler, Social Reformer, 1906 Commemoration of Apolo Kivebulaya, Priest, Evangelist, 1933 How often we look upon God as our last and feeblest resource! We go to him because we have nowhere else to go. And then we learn that the storms of life have driven us, not upon the rocks, but into the desired haven.

Christianity Quotes, by George MacDonald

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Feast of Benedict of Nursia, Father of Western Monasticism, c.550 Continuing a short series on topics of Christian apologetics: Naturally, the first emotion of man towards the being he calls God, but of whom he knows so little, is fear. Where it is possible that fear should exist it is well that it should exist, cause continual uneasiness, and be cast out by nothing less than love.... Until love, which is the truth towards God, is able to cast out fear, it is well that fear should hold; it is a bond, however poor, between that which is and that which creates -- a bond that must be broken, but a bond that can be broken only by the tightening of an infinitely closer bond. Verily God must be terrible to those that are far from Him: for they fear He will do -- yea, is doing -- with them what they do not, cannot desire, and can ill endure... While they are such as they are, there is much in Him that cannot but affright them: they ought, they do well, to fear Him... To remove that fear from their hearts, save by letting them know His love with its purifying fire, a love which for ages, it may be, they cannot know, would be to give them up utterly to the power of evil. Persuade men that fear is a vile thing, that it is an insult to God, that He will have none of it -- while they are yet in love with their own will, and slaves to every movement of passionate impulse -- and what will the consequence be? That they will insult God as a discarded idol, a superstition, a falsehood, as a thing under whose evil influence they have too long groaned, a thing to be cast out and spit upon. After that, how much will they learn of Him?

Christianity Quotes, by George MacDonald

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Commemoration of Remigius, Bishop of Rheims, Apostle of the Franks, 533 Commemoration of Thérèse of Lisieux, Carmelite Nun, Spiritual Writer, 1897 People talk about special providences. I believe in the providences, but not in the speciality. I do not believe that God lets the thread of my affairs go for six days, and on the seventh evening takes it up for a moment.

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Feast of Alfred the Great, King of the West Saxons, Scholar, 899 Commemoration of Cedd, Founding Abbot of Lastingham, Bishop of the East Saxons, 664 Do you think that the work God gives us to do is never easy? Jesus says that His yoke is easy, His burden is light. People sometimes refuse to do God's work just because it is easy. This is sometimes because they cannot believe that easy work is His work; but there may be a very bad pride in it. Some, again, accept it with half a heart and do it with half a hand. But however easy any work may be, it can not be well done without taking thought about it. And such people, instead of taking thought about their work, generally take thought about the morrow -- in which no work can be done, any more than in yesterday.

Christianity Quotes, by George MacDonald

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In God, we live every commonplace as well as the most exalted moment of our being. To trust in Him when no need is pressing, when things seem going right of themselves, may be harder than when things seem going wrong.

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EPIPHANY What should I think of my child, if I found that he limited his faith in me and hope from me to the few promises he had heard me utter! The faith that limits itself to the promises of God seems to me to partake of the paltry character of such a faith in my child -- good enough for a Pagan, but for a Christian a miserable and wretched faith. Those who rest in such a faith would feel yet more comfortable if they had God's bond instead of His word, which they regard not as the outcome of His character but as a pledge of His honour. They try to believe in the truth of His word, but the truth of His Being they understand not. In His oath they persuade themselves that they put confidence: in himself they do not believe, for they know Him not.

Christianity Quotes, by George MacDonald

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O Christ, my life, possess me utterly. Take me and make a little Christ of me. If I am anything but thy father's son, 'Tis something not yet from the darkness won. Oh, give me light to live with open eyes. Oh, give me life to hope above all skies.

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Feast of Alban, first Martyr of Britain, c.209 Continuing a short series on authenticity: There is one growing persuasion of the present age which I hope this book may somewhat serve to stem -- not by any argument, but by... a healthy up stirring ... of the imagination and the conscience. In these days, when men are so gladly hearing afresh that "in Him there is no darkness at all"; that God, therefore could not have created any man if He knew that he must live in torture to all eternity; and that His hatred to evil cannot be expressed by injustice, itself the one essence of evil, -- for certainly it would be nothing less than injustice to punish infinitely what was finitely committed, no sinner being capable of understanding the abstract enormity of what he does, -- in these days has a arisen another falsehood, less, yet very perilous: thousands of half-thinkers imagine that, since it is declared with such authority that hell is not everlasting, there is then no hell at all. To such folly, I, for one, have never given enticement or shelter. I see no hope for many, no way for the divine love to reach them, save through a very ghastly hell. Men have got to repent; there is no other escape for them, and no escape from that.

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Feast of Hugh, Carthusian Monk, Bishop of Lincoln, 1200 [God desires] not that He may say to them, "Look how mighty I am, and go down upon your knees and worship", for power alone was never yet worthy of prayer; but that He may say thus: "Look, my children, you will never be strong but with my strength. I have no other to give you. And that you can get only by trusting in me. I can not give it you any other way. There is no other way.

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That no obedience but a perfect one will satisfy God, I hold with all my heart and strength; but that there is none else that He cares for, is one of the lies of the enemy. What father is not pleased with the first tottering attempt of his little one to walk? What father would be satisfied with anything but the manly step of the full-grown son?

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Commemoration of Felix, Bishop, Apostle to the East Angles, 647 He who forgives not is not forgiven, and the prayer of the Pharisee is as the weary beating of the surf of hell, while the cry of a soul out of its fire sets the heart-strings of Love trembling.

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The one use of the Bible is to make us look at Jesus, that through Him we might know His Father and our Father, His God and our God. Till we thus know Him, let us hold the Bible dear as the moon of our darkness, by which we travel toward the east; not dear as the sun whence her light cometh, and towards which we haste, that, walking in the sun himself, we may no more need the mirror that reflected his absent brightness.

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They were in a better condition, acknowledging only a terror above them flaming on that unknown mountain height, than stooping to worship the idol below them. Fear is nobler than sensuality. Fear is better than no God, better than a god made with hands. In that fear lay deep hidden the sense of the infinite. The worship of fear is true, though very low; and though not acceptable to God in itself -- for only the worship of spirit and of truth is acceptable to him -- yet even in His sight it is precious. For he regards men not as they are merely, but as they shall be; not as they shall be merely, but as they are now growing, or capable of growing, towards that image after which He made them that they might grow to it. Therefore a thousand stages, each in itself all but valueless, are of inestimable worth as the necessary and connected gradations of an infinite progress. A condition which of declension would indicate a devil, may of growth indicate a saint.

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Instead of so knowing Christ that they have Him in them saving them, they lie wasting themselves in soul-sickening self-examination as to whether they are believers, whether they are really trusting in the Atonement, whether they are truly sorry for their sins -- the way to madness of the brain and despair of the heart... Instead of asking yourself whether you believe or not, ask yourself whether you have, this day, done one thing because He said, Do it! or once abstained because He said, Do not do it! It is simply absurd to say you believe, or even want to believe, in Him, if you do not do anything He tells you.

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Feast of Mary Sumner, Founder of the Mothers' Union, 1921 I would not favour a fiction to keep a whole world out of hell. The hell that a lie would keep any man out of is doubtless the very best place for him to go to. It is truth... that saves the world.

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Feast of Alfred the Great, King of the West Saxons, Scholar, 899 Commemoration of Cedd, Founding Abbot of Lastingham, Bishop of the East Saxons, 664 A man may be haunted with doubts, and only grow thereby in faith. Doubts are the messengers of the Living One to the honest. They are the first knock at our door of things that are not yet, but have to be, understood... Doubt must precede every deeper assurance; for uncertainties are what we first see when we look into a region hitherto unknown, unexplored, unannexed.

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The uncertainty lies always in the intellectual region, never in the practical. What Paul cares about is plain enough to the true heart, however far from plain to the man whose desire to understand goes ahead of his obedience.

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Christmas Eve They were all looking for a king To slay their foes, and lift them high; Thou cam'st, a little baby thing That made a woman cry.

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Commemoration of Amy Carmichael, Founder of the Dohnavour Fellowship, 1951 To the dim and bewildered vision of humanity, God's care is more evident in some instances than in others; and upon such instances men seize, and call them providences. It is well that they can; but it would be gloriously better if they could believe that the whole matter is one grand providence.

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Commemoration of Gilbert of Sempringham, Founder of the Gilbertine Order, 1189 To realize that you are safe and happy standing at God's side, with His love encompassing you because you are forgiven; too happy to take offense any more; too much in love with life to want to be made miserable with an unforgiving heart, and knowing that now every conflict is a chance to learn more of the exceeding beauty of Love: that is worth living for, and surely worth dying to this misery-making self for. [Continued tomorrow] ... The Notebooks of Florence Allshorn February 5, 1998 And let us be grateful beyond words for this: that God will not let us alone until we have learnt it and stand by His side. He troubles us, He brings His disturbing light back and back to us, showing us how coarse and heavy the dying self, seeking her own, is; how horrible it is that any feeling of unforgiveness, accepted and held on to, towards our brother, drives God from our side; how quickly we must do all we can to heal the separation, because we are out in the cold and the dark indeed, if divorced from that Love. ... The Notebooks of Florence Allshorn February 6, 1998 Commemoration of Martyrs of Japan, 1597 Prayer is the expression of a good desire. The human heart is full of restless desires, and the prayers of men consist for the most part of the unsifted petitions which are urged by their varying passions. To desire what is right, and to desire it consistently, and passionately, is the first condition of true living; the desires can be corrected only by truth, the mind must apprehend God, and then it will say, "There is none upon earth that I desire beside Thee.".

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Feast of Commemoration of Helena, Protector of the Faith, 330 The kingdom of heaven is not come even when God's will is our law; it is fully come when God's will is our will.

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Commemoration of Bartolomè de las Casas, Apostle to the Indies, 1566 If God said, "I forgive you," to a man who hated his brother, and if (as is impossible) that voice of forgiveness should reach the man, what would it mean to him? How would the man interpret it? Would it not mean to him, "You may go on hating. I do not mind it. You have had great provocation, and are justified in your hate?" No doubt God takes what wrong there is, and what provocation there is, into the account; but the more provocation, the more excuse that can be urged for the hate, the more reason, if possible, that the hater should be delivered from the hell of his hate, that God's child should be made the loving child that He meant him to be. The man would think, not that God loved the sinner, but that He forgave the sin, which God never does. Every sin meets its due fate -- inexorable expulsion from the paradise of God's Humanity.

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