“We Know That We Have Passed From Death Unto Life…”
“We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren.”
(I John 3:14)
The Lord’s people in their early days have a measure of heavenly love. Love [is] manifested in them [for] God’s word, God’s people, God’s servants, and God’s truth. There is in them, in their weakest and tenderest days, a separation from the world, a casting-in of their lot amongst the people of God, a going-out in the tenderness of their heart and affection towards them. We see this in Ruth: though she was a poor heathen idolatress, no sooner was her heart touched by the finger of God, than she clave to Naomi.
Divine love can only spring from the teachings and operations of God upon the heart. Our “carnal mind is enmity against God” — nothing but implacable, irreconcilable enmity. But when the Lord is pleased to make himself in some measure, known to the soul; when he is pleased, in some degree, to unveil his lovely face, and to give a discovery of his grace and glory — immediately love springs up.
He is so lovely an Object!
As the Bride says, He is “altogether lovely.” His beauty is so surpassing, his grace so rich, his mercy so free — all that he is and has is so unspeakably glorious — that no sooner does he unveil his lovely face, than he wins over all the love of the heart, takes possession of the bosom, and draws every affection of the soul to centre wholly and solely in himself.
By J.C. Philpot