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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

I See the Son

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It is not so much a question of what we are, but of what our Father is, and of what we have in Him. There may be some deficiency in availing ourselves of them, but it is a great cheer to my soul to know that (as a general might say) “My resources are complete.” Talk of feebleness and declension, I admit it fully; but I do not admit that there is any lack in the resources. I look upon my Father and see the resources as great as ever.

 

We are set here for a purpose; we are all missionaries. Our duties are but discipline to fit us for His service. It is our Lord’s will to fit us for His own service, and He places us in different circles and responsibilities for training. The more you are for Him, the more He will cut away from you all that debars you from being for Him fully. “We which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake” (2 Cor 4:11).

 

I never yet saw anyone get any advance in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ who did not get at the same time severance from the thing that would hinder his being the expression of it. “That the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal body” (2 Cor 4:11). Monks and nuns think they can sever themselves from it. All ascetics are on that ground. But no! Nothing but the Father’s own hand can do it; and He will touch something that perhaps you know nothing about, something you little expect; but He knows all about it. He knows how to touch, and His own hand does it.

 

I am to be here for the glorified Lord Jesus Christ. I come out from inside, having learned the blessedness of His rest and comfort. I confront the world because I belong to another order of things altogether. I am the very opposite of the world. What has the Church done? She gave up the power of the Holy Spirit, and accepted the power of the world. Think of Rome . . . but she is not alone.

 

Consider Stephen. “But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God” (Acts 7:55). Until we understand this, we do not understand our position for the Lord Jesus on the earth; and we could not understand the new order of things, the new center. Here the fact is disclosed that the old order of things is over; not the world simply, but all here that is nominally for God. It is not only the pagan world, but the religious world as we call it.

 

Stephen is the first witness of the new order, the new creation. That is the first time ever a man on earth saw a Man in heaven, and now a Man in heaven is seen in connection with the glory of God. Stephen saw Him, and he turns around and tells what he knows, not what he has read, but what he knows. He says, “I see the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.”

 

The Word of God tells us what to believe. In believing, we progressively have the virtue of it; not only the food, but the food appropriated. Stephen is transformed. He himself had, like the rest, been looking for the Lord to come from glory that the times of refreshing (kingdom) might come from the presence of the Lord. But now, he has a new metropolis; and that is, the Man at the right hand of the Father. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Eph 1:3).

 

- J B Stoney

 

 

Excerpt from MJS devotional:

“The Lord Jesus’ work on the Cross gave us present entrance into the Holiest of All. What removed our sins rent the veil; and those who believe are positioned in the innermost sanctuary even now. Boldness to enter there on any pretension of our love or holiness, of nature or even divine ordinance, would be shameless presumption. In Hebrews Ten it is calmly claimed for believers, who are exhorted in the strongest terms to approach by faith the Father’s presence without a doubt or a cloud, now.” – C A Coats

 

“There are two basic things that the believer has to learn. One is, you are not to have the man here and the place where he is, the other is, you do have another Man, and the place where He is.” –MJS

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

 

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