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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

“He Is Not Here”

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May God continue to give us to know to walk in the love of Christ to one another!

 

 

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above” (Col 3:1). If I seek the things above, my acts will reveal what I seek; they will be heavenly, because the acts must follow the occupation of the heart. But not this only. If I am seeking the things above, I cannot seek the things here below; and the things above are “where Christ is,” the things here are where He was and is refused. The more my acts reflect and support my seeking, the more eagerly and heartily do I seek; and I am not only seeking but thinking of things above, and not of things on the earth.

 

I am set to journey through a scene where He is not, to be a follower of Him who has been rejected here. How can I know what suits Him, save as I am conversant with the place and things where He is? Moses is shown the tabernacle, the figure of the true, in the glorious mount; and surly we cannot walk in unison with the Lord Jesus, who is in heaven itself, if we do not seek the things which are above, where He sits at the right hand of the Father.

 

When I seek the things above, I necessarily turn my eyes from the things here below, and I find myself in fellowship with the Lord Jesus where He is. The seeking is in connection with the scene where I am blessed with all spiritual blessings. If I am risen with Christ, I must occupy myself with Him where He is. How are we to conduct ourselves in a place where He is not, if we are not in association with Him, and do not cherish and strengthen our links with Him in the glory where He is?

 

The Lord Jesus is passed into the heavens, touched with a feeling for our infirmities (Heb 4:15), apart from sin, in order to supply us from Himself the grace that was in Himself down here, and thereby enable us to walk “as He walked,” the Son of man that is in heaven. It is as I behold the Lord in glory that I am “transformed according to the same image from glory to glory, as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2Cor 3:18), and am qualified to minister of the Christ now in the presence of the Father, either to saint or to sinner; for there only can I know the glory of the Lord for the one, or the terror of the Lord for the other.

 

It is quite as possible for a tree to grow and flourish (e.g. even in the wrong direction - NC) without any sustenance as for a saint to act according to Christ’s mind apart from Himself, where He sits; and every effect in doctrine and practice is simply traceable to neglect or ignorance of this, the only proper direction of the eye and heart—“things above”. It will be said that we are ever receiving favors from God on earth, and are we not to enjoy and prize them? I reply, certainly, but where are they to carry the heart?

 

Is it to trust in the scene where Christ is not, where He has been and is rejected, or to rise to the nail-pierced hands which has so liberally and bountifully provided for us? Our Father is the same and has the same love for us below as above; but here He provides for us with reference to our natural state and condition; and hence all His arrangements for us, if rightly accepted, would lead us above, instead of binding our hearts to what is below.

 

His gifts come down to ease us in a world like this, that our hearts may rise the easier to the scene where He displays the fullness of His love for us, and if there be a chastening in the circumstances here, it is only to detach us the more effectually from all here, and to lead us to the home where He has given all to us. So that seeking the things above ensures every good thing for us in every condition and situation.

 

- J B Stoney

 

Daily devotional by Miles J Stanford: http://www.abideabove.com/hungry-heart/

 

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Awesome Devotion. I truly agree with you. Seek ye the righteousness and the kingdom of God and everything good shall be added to you.

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Awesome Devotion. I truly agree with you. Seek ye the righteousness and the kingdom of God and everything good shall be added to you.

 

Amen and thanks for your input! With me, seeking God's Kingdom and His righteousness first means to always remember Him and think on Him, not without thinking on our needs but thinking on Him more than our needs, in knowing He will provide regardless of all things. Learning more all the time to contemplate the Provider more than His provisions.

 

God Bless!

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Correct me if I'm wrong but the name J B Stoney (from the OP) rings bells from my distant past peripheral connection with the 'Exclusive Brethren'.

Blessings to any who are EB's (not that I could ever align with 'exclusivity'.

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Hi WOTS - Thanks for your reply. Though there have been fractions among the Brethren I have disregarded any as one or the other. I've been having fellowship in their services off and on for about 15 years and none speak of either fraction. Appreciate your concern and the blessing.

 

Blessings!

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