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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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NetChaplain

Perfect Origin, Security and Destiny

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In John XVII we find the Son in vocal communion with the Father. Turning from earth He looks up, and we hear Him giving out the thoughts common to Him and the Father, speaking of the origin, security and the destiny of those who are sharers of the Father’s love. He takes them up as a people who have not anything to do with the world, begins with them as seen before the foundation of the world connected with Himself by the Father. No origin can be higher, no blessedness—nothing like that!

 

Thus to get back to God the Father is one of the most blessed of thoughts. To be able to look on any individual who is one spirit with the Lord Jesus, and to think that there is one whom He had given Him of the Father before the world was! Given to Him, but, before that, belonging to the Father. “Thine they were and Thou gavest them to Me.” Not only that, the beginning of our blessing, but He tells of it in a scene where none of the evil now present with us is to be found. Our standing in the Father’s thought before even the world was is what we get here. It was Thy counsel and plan, all known to Me to be My reward, that they should be sons and heirs.

 

What a blessed thought put forth by the Lord Jesus that they should be made so one with Himself that the glory (son-ship via the Gospel of Christ – John 1:14; 17:5—NC) given to Him could be given to them; that they should be manifested as the people of His love, in whom His glory will be displayed. The moment He lets them hear of the glory given to Him, they hear also that He proposes to act in all the largeness of His love and share it all with them.

 

He does not look to their joy in the wilderness—that is not their destiny; He looks to the future scene, to the time when all that now is shall have crumbled and passed away. He turns to the Father’s house, where all the people loved of the Father will be, to be the manifestation of His glory. Ah! Dwell upon the Lord Jesus’ thoughts for you, that the heart of this Lord should delight in the hour of His own dying distress, to unfold the origin, security and destiny of those given Him by the Father for their comfort when He was to be taken from them.

 

The people will never understand what manner of person they ought to be down here, unless they have laid hold of the Lord Jesus’ thoughts about them. Those three things, their origin, security and destiny must be brought to bear on every truth presented. His love in letting those thoughts flow out in our hearing ought to be very greatly marked by us. Having come out of heaven, and going back there, leaving us such a record of the Father’s love to those that were chosen in Him before they had a beginning.

 

If I have come into the Father’s presence it is as one who has proved the value of the Blood of His Son. It is the answer to every difficulty, because it is the answer that satisfied God, even the Blood of His only begotten Son. Are you at ease in the presence of the Father, in those moments when a sense of the holiness of God is most pressing upon your soul? Have you such an answer that you are able to say, “I should be afraid not to be at perfect ease and rest in His presence, because of that answer?” Shall I be ill at ease in treading that path, when I find that my Father in His holiness can turn and look on me there with perfect satisfaction, on the ground of the work done by His Son?

 

- G V Wigram

 

 

 

Excerpt from MJS devotional for Oct 23:

 

“The inward exercise of Romans Seven and the testing of the wilderness serve the purpose of teaching us what sin in the flesh is, and what is in our hearts; while such special discipline of the Father as Paul’s thorn in the flesh is rather to protect us from the unalterable tendencies of the flesh. The latter is always needed, and goes on in one form or other to the end of our course here.” -MJS

 

“We belong to another sphere altogether. We have died, and our life is hidden with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). We are like a tree that has its roots in heaven, and its branches down here. No doubt our branches are fretted and ripped by the atmosphere here, but nothing can touch the roots up there. Planted inside, they flourish outside.” -J.B.S.

http://www.abideabove.com/hungry-heart/

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