| Re: Do You Know Him? Pt. 3|
Do You Know Him?
January 31st, 1864
C. H. SPURGEON
"That I may know him."Philippians 3:10.
II. Secondly, let us DRAW CURTAIN AFTER CURTAIN WHICH SHALL ADMIT US TO KNOW MORE OF CHRIST.
Did you ever visit the manufactory of splendid porcelain at Sevres? I have done so. If anybody should say to me, "Do you know the manufactory at Sevres?" I should say, " Yes, I do, and no, I do not. I know it, for I have seen the building; I have seen the rooms in which the articles are exhibited for sale, and I have seen the museum and model room; but I do not know the factory as I would like to know it, for I have not seen the process of manufacture, and have not been admitted into the workshops, as some are. "Suppose I had seen, however, the process of the moulding of the clay, and the laying on of the rich designs, if anybody should still say to me, "Do you know how they manufacture those wonderful articles?" I should very likely still be compelled to say, "No, I do not, because there are certain secrets, certain private rooms into which neither friend nor foe can be admitted, lest the process should be open to the world." So, you see, I might say I knew, and yet might not half know; and when I half knew, still there would be so much left, that I might be compelled to say, "I do not know." How many different ways there are of knowing a personand even so there are all these different ways of knowing Christ; so that you may keep on all your lifetime, still wishing to get into another room, and another room, nearer and nearer to the great secret, still panting to "know him." Good Rutherford says, "I urge upon you a nearer communion with Christ, and a growing communion. There are curtains to be drawn by, in Christ, that we never shut, and new foldings in love with him. I despair that ever I shall shall win to the far end of that love; there are so many plies in it. Therefore, dig deep, and set by as much time in the day for him as you can, he will be won by labor."
To begin with. We know a person when we recognize him. You know the Queen. Well, I do. I recollect seeing her, and if I were to see any quantity of ladies, I think I should know which was the Queen and which was not. You may say honestly that you know her to that extent. Beloved, every Christian must in this sense know Christ. You must know him by a divine illumination so as to know who he is and what line is. When Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Whom sayest thou that I am," he said, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God;" and the Lord replied, "Blessed art thou, Simon Barjonas, for flesh and blood hath not revealed this unto thee." It is an early step in this knowledge of Christ, to know and to believe that Jesus Christ is Lord; to know that Christ is God, divine to me; that Christ is man, brother to mebone of my bone and flesh of my fleshthat as such line is a sin-subduing Savior; that line is for inc an intercessor, pleading before the throne; my prophet, priest, and kingin this sense I trust that most of you know him. If you do not, breathe the silent prayer now, "Lord, help me that I may know him." But this knowledge of recognition is comparatively a low attainment, one of the lowest rounds of the ladder of light.
In the second place, a believer knows Christ, to a higher degree when he knows him by practical experiment at acquaintance with what he does. For instance, I know Christ as a cleanser. They tell me he is a refiner, that he cleanses from spots; he has washed me in his precious blood, and to that extent I know him. They tell me that he clothes the naked; he hath covered me with a garment of righteousness, and to that extent I know him. They tell me that he is a breaker, and that he breaks fetters, he has set my soul at liberty, and therefore I know him. They tell me that he is a king and that he reigns over sin; he hath subdued my enemies beneath his feet, and I know him in that character. They tell me he is a shepherd: I know him for I am his sheep. They say he is a door: I have entered in through him, and I know him as a door. They say he is food: my spirit feeds on him as on the bread of heaven, and, therefore, I know him as such. You know if anyone says, "Do you know doctor So-and-so?" It is a very satisfactory answer, if you can reply, "Oh, yes, I know him, for he attended me the last time that I was ill." There is more knowledge in that, than if on could only say, " Oh, yes, I know him: he wears such-and-such a hat or "line is a man of such-and-such an appearance." So, Christian, thing is a second and higher step to know Christ, because you have experienced in your own soul that he is just what God has revealed him to be.
But we know a man in a better sense than this when we are on speaking terms with him. "Do you know So-and-so?" " Yes," you say, I not only know him by name, so as to recognize him; I not only know him as a tradesman having dealt with him, but I know him because when we pass each other in the morning, we exchange a word or two; and if I had anything to say upon mattersany request to makeI should feel no difficulty about asking him." Well, now. the Christian knows his Lord in this sense, line has every day official communication with Christ, line is on speaking terms with him. There may be persons here, perhaps, who know the Queen in a sense in which I do not know herperhaps they speak to him. They have so done; I have never done that; they go beyond me there. But you see, dear friends, this is not a very great thing because you may be on speaking terms with a man, but you may not know much of him for all that. So you may be in the habit of daily prayer, and you may talk with Christ every morning and every evening, and you may know exceedingly little of him. You are on speaking terms with him; but there ins something beyond this, very far beyond this. As I might say that I know a man merely because I meet him every day, and ask him for what I want, and understand that he is kind and generous; but how shallow is such an acquaintance, for I do not know his private character nor his inward heart. Even so a believer may have constant dealings with Christ in his prayers and in his praises, and yet for all that, he may have only gone a certain distance, and may have need still to pray, "That I may know him."
But you are said to know a person better still when he invites you to his house. At Christmas time there is a family party and a romp, and he asks you there, and you are one of the children, and enter into all their sports around the fire-side, and you indulge as they do in the genialities of social life. You are asked again; you go there pretty often; in fact, if there is a happy evening in that house they generally expect to see friend So-and-so there. Well, now, that is better. We are getting now into something like knowing a man; and I do trust there are many of you, beloved, who have got as far as this with regard to your divine Lord. Christ has entertained you with some rare visits from his gracious presence. He brought you into the banquetting-house, and his banner over you was love. When he manifested himself, he did it unto you as he did not unto the world. He was pleased in the majesty of his condescension, to take you aside and show you his hands and his side. He called you "Friend;" he treated you as such, and permitted you to enjoy thine sweets of being one of the family.
Ah, but you may go into a man's house as a constant visitor, and yet you may not know himthat is to say, not in the highest sense. You speak to the man's wife and say, "Your husband is a marvellously charming man; what a cheerful, joyful, spirited man he is; he never seems to have any depressions of spirit, and experiences no changes whatever." She shakes her head. and she says, "Ah! you do not know him, you do not know him as I do;" because shine sees him at all times and at all hours; she can read the very heart of the man. That Christian has grown much in grace who has advanced not only to be the friend of Christ, having occasional fellowship with him, but who comes to recognize his marriage-union with the person of his Lord, and of whom it can be said, "The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him; and he will show them his covenant," Now we have the intimacy of love, with its perfect frankness, nearness, sweetness, joyousness, delight. The rending away of every separating veil makes the communion to be as near as it well can be this side the black river; but a Christian may get farther than this.
Even the spouse may not know her husband. The most loving wife who ever entered into the cares of her husband, must have discovered that there is a something which separates his experience from her powers of comprehension. Luther's wife. Catherine, was of all women the wife for Luther; but there were times in Luther's gigantic tribulations, when he must leave Kate behind. There were extraordinary times within him; times both of ecstatic joy, when like a great angel, he stretched his mighty wings, and flew right up to heaven, and of awful misery, when he seemed to sink down to the very depths of hell; and in either case, no other heart could keep pace with him. Then it was himself alone who had communion with himself. And a Christian may so grow in grace as to become identified with Christ, a member of his body; not so much married to him as a part of him, a member of the great body of Christ, so that he suffers with Christ, sympathizes with Jesus, his heart beating to the same dolorous tune, his veins swollen with the sumac floods of grief, or else his eyes sparkling with that same gleam of joy, according to the Master's Word, "That my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full."
Well, have not you waded out of your depth some of you? I have certainly got out of my own. I feel as if the Master might come on to this platform, look round on many of us, and say, "Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip?" for truly even in the minor sense, though I trust we arc saved, though we have believed in Jesus, yet we have not reached the height of this great text"That I may know him."
| 2008/1/9 8:31||Profile|
That I may KNOW Him.
What does it mean to Know the Lord. KNOW is used of when Adam first KNEW Eve, in the most Intimate oneness anyone can imagine. And the two shall become "One flesh".
That's the ultimate of "That I may KNOW Him".
Before Paul says these words, "That I may KNOW Him", he says,
6Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.
7But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
8Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
9And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
10That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
He's comparing his life under law to that of Grace...I am crucified with Christ, no longer I but Christ In Me.......that is the ultimate...That I may Know Him...for no one can KNOW Him apart from our identification with Him in death and resurrection life. He is our very life.....( and the two shall become ONE Flesh).
Bone of His Bone and Flesh of His flesh.
It makes John 17 just POP OUT like never before.
3And this is life eternal, that they might [u][b]Know[/b][/u] thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
4I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.
5And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
6I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.
7Now they have [u][b]Know[/b][/u] that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.
8For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have [u][b]Know[/b][/u] surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.
9I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.
10And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.
11And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.
12While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
13And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
15I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
16They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
17Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
18As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
19And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
20Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
21That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may [u][b]Know[/b][/u]that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
24Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.
25O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.
26And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
Love in Christ
| 2008/1/9 9:11|
Re: Phil. 3:10
That I may know Him,
and the power of His resurrection,
and the fellowship of His sufferings,
being made conformable unto His death;
Since we are entering the season, may we share
with one another, what it means to you.
To Know Him More,
Your next post question asked,
"Can we know Him without knowing the power of His resurrection?
I don't believe we can. I believe it's in the power of His resurrection that we do know Him, and in that resurrection power of "Christ in you", we then know the fellowship of His sufferings.
There are many suffering today, but it is not the fellowship of His sufferings. Oh to know the difference!
Suffering doesn't produce resurrection life, but really it's the opposite, the resurrection life produces suffering..the fellowship of HIS suffering.
Being made conformable to His death....i see in Romans 8:11-13, that it's the Ministry of the Holy Spirit in us who mortifies the flesh. Yet again, how many are trying to die to self apart from this Resurrection Life in us making that possible.
It's only in the Resurrected Power do we know His Words as Spirit and Life. Those words are quickened by might in the inner man.....strengthening us.
Paul's prayer in Ephesians 3 is so awesome next to these scriptures.
That we may KNOW the length, depth, height and width, (of Christ that is)...and to be strengthened by might in the inner man... and that the power of God working in and through us works beyond anything we could possibly ask or think...to God be the Glory.
Thank you for starting this thread!
| 2008/1/9 13:41|
Can we know Him without The Incorruptable Seed of the Father being birthed in us and His Spirit being our new creation life creatures? Also being taught by the promised Holy Spirit Comforter, Parakleet and Teacher of the Christ that is now our new Life in Christ, Can we know Him without the the power of This Faith of Jesus Christ and the truth of the Holy Spirit in us?
NO, That is why Paul fought a such great fight, his whole ministry was being conformed to Christs' suffering. He was doing the greater works Jesus spoke of when He said we would do them.
Jhn 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater [works] than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
Then He comes back to reveal Himself, that is Christ birthed in Paul and puts the Holy Spirit in Him by His answered prayer to the Father and then Paul was on his way with the Gospel that Christ had given Him, "My Gospel", not taught by any man or written word, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ Himself.
This is what knowing Him comes to, that is by Him that is in us we, by His Person born again in us, we can know Him, even-even Jesus Christ Himself The Son of God.
We can only be perfect by the Christ that is in us and the sealing of the Holy Spirit to that effect, "Christ in you the Hope of Glory."
This is the very fulfillment of The Plan of God, planned before the foundation of the world. Eph 1:4-14.
In Christ by His Faith, by His life, by the Father's Seed, and by the Holy Spirits Seal we will by Faith and experience know Him. Praise God.
Colossians 1:25-29 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: Whereunto I also labour, striving according to His working, which worketh in me mightily.
Perfect by The Perfect Seed of the Father in us and us in Him. Now!
Philippians 2:5-13 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.
In Him, knowing the length, breadth, depth and height of Who this Christ that is in us has become to each of His Fathers son's that has been birthed by God through the Incorruptable Seed of "OUR FATHER", Jesus Christ the Word Himself.
Ephesians 3:14-21 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.
In Christ: Phillip
| 2008/1/10 1:13||Profile|
Phillip, that was very good!
I know many just take that phrase " That I may Know Him", and forget what Paul is saying before and after this phrase.
Under Law, Paul certainly did not KNOW Him, however he knew much about scripture...probably more then most.
To me, Philippians 3, from beginning to end IS life under GRACE, and Grace is the Cross, beginning to end...nothing cheap about it!
The first and last of any paragraph, letter etc, is the most important of all.
He first says, we are the true Circumcision who worship God in the Spirit and not in the flesh....then begins by comparing life under flesh...law vs life under Grace........the power of the Resurrected life of Christ in us, that is not keeping LAW, but living a crucified life.
Always carrying about in our bodies the dying of Jesus that the life of Jesus is manifest. One can't work without the other, and both are going on at the same time. Some kind of spontaneous combustion!!
Now Paul is saying, our calling is UPWARD, in the Heavenly realm, and we run with patience towards the finished line.
The "Prize" of the High Calling of GOD in Christ Jesus.
I love Paul's words before he died, I have run the race...I have finished my course...there is NOW laid up for me a crown of life that the Lord Himself will give me. He KNEW this....he wasn't guessing or said...well, I'll just have to see....He knew, and he wasn't boasting either.
He didn't mind earthly things or get involved with the politics of his day. Rather he instructed the Church to submit to those in authority over them.
Love in Christ
| 2008/1/10 9:42|
| Re:Do You Know Him? Pt. 4|
Do You Know Him?
January 31st, 1864
C. H. SPURGEON
"That I may know him."Philippians 3:10.
III. Having taken you so far, let us SIT DOWN A FEW MINUTES AND CONSIDER WHAT SORT OF KNOWLEDGE THIS KNOWLEDGE OF CHRIST IS"That I may know him."
Then it is clear, if I know him I shall have a very vivid sense of his personality. "That I may know him." He will not be to me a myth, a vision, a spirit, bat a person, a real solid person, as much real as I am myself, or as my dearest friend can be to me. My soul, never be satisfied within a shadowy Christ. My heart, be thou never content until he hath embraced thy soul, and proved to thee that he is the lover of his people. This knowledge, then, must be a knowledge of him in his personality. Then, beloved, it must be a personal knowledge on our part. I cannot know Christ through another person's brains. I cannot love him with another man's heart, and I cannot see him with another man's eyes. Heaven's delight is, "Mine eyes shall see him and not another." These eyes shall behold the King in his beauty. Well, beloved, if this be heaven, we certainly cannot do without a personal sight of Christ here. I am so afraid of living in a second-hand religion. God forbid that I should get a biographical experience. Lord save us from having borrowed communion. No, I must know him myself. O God, let me not be deceived in this. I must know him without fancy or proxy; I must know him on mine own account.
Then these few thoughts upon what sort of knowledge we must have. It must be an intelligent knowledgeI must know him. I must know his natures, divine and human. I must know his officesI must know his attributesI must know his worksI must know his shameI must know his glory; for I do not know him if it be merely a subject of passion and not of intellect. I must let my head consciously meditate upon him until I own something like an idea of him, that I may "Comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge."
Then I must have an affectionate knowledge of him; and, indeed, if I do know him at all, I must love him. As it is said of some men, that there is such a charm about them, that if you once get into their company you cannot criticise any longer, but must admire; so you feel with Christ. It is said of Garibaldi, that if you are in his society he charms all, so that even malice and slander must be silent in his presence. Infinitely, supremely so is it with Christ. Being near him, his love warms our hearts, till we glow with intense love to him.
Then I shall find, if I know Christ, that this is a satisfying knowledge. When I know Christ my mind will he fill to the brimI shall feel that I have found that which my spirit panted after. "This is that bread whereof if a man eat he shall never hunger."
At the same time it is an exciting knowledge; the more I know of Christ, the more I shall want to know. The deeper I plunge the greater the deeps which will be revealed. The higher I climb the loftier will be the summits which invite my eager footsteps. I shall want the more as I get the more. My spiritual thirst will increase, though in another sense it will be entirely quenched.
And this knowledge of Christ will be a most happy one, in fact, so happy, that sometimes it will completely bear me up above all trials, and doubts, and sorrows; and it will, while I enjoy it, make me something more than "Man that is born of a woman who is of few days, and full of trouble;" for it will fling about me the immortality of the ever-living Savior, and gird me with the golden girdle of his eternal happiness. To be near to Christ, is to be near to the pearly gates of the golden-streeted city. Say not, "Jerusalem, my happy home, my labors have an end in thee;" but say, "Jesus, thou art my rest, and when I have thee, my spirit is at peace." I might thus keep on speaking in praise of this knowledge, but I will not.
Only permit me to say, what a refreshing, what a sanctifying knowledge is this, to know him. When the Laodicean Church was neither hot nor cold, but lukewarm, how did Christ seek her revival? Did he send her precious doctrines? Did he send her excellent precepts? Mark you, he came himself, for thus it is said, "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come into him, and will sup with him, and he with me." That is a cure for it all, you see. No matter how lukewarm, though God may say, "I will spue thee out of my mouth," yet, if Christ comes, that is the cure. The presence of Christ with his Church puts away all her sicknesses. When the disciples of Christ were at sea in a storm, do you recollect how he comforted them? Did he send them an angel? No. "It is I, line not afraid;" and when they knew him, then they had no more fears. They were assembled one night, "the doors being shut for fear of the Jews:" how did he comfort them? Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and said, "Peace be unto you." There was Thomas, full of doubts and fears. How did Jesus Christ take away his doubts? "Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side." Oh! it is Christ, it is Christ who cures all. The company of Christ is the only thing which a Christian wants. I will undertake that if his heart be like an iceberg, as soon as Jesus comes, it shall flame like Vesuvius. His spirit shall be dead and like a rotten corpse; but if Jesus comes he shall leap like a hart, and become strong as a young unicorn. Thy presence makes me like the chariots of Amminadib. Now, do not think I am talking what I do not know. Do not imagine that I am talking mere fanatical slip-slop which I cannot prove. I do assert (and God who searcheth all hearts, knows how true this is), I do assert that, from the depths of doubt, of dullness, of worldliness, I have leaped in one moment into love, and life, and holy enthusiasm, when Jesus Christ has manifested himself to nine. I cannot describe the difference between my spirit, water-logged, worm-eaten, ready to sink to the bottom without Christ, and that same spirit, like a strong stanch ship, with sails full, with favorable wind, speeding into harbor, with a golden freight. Like you poor little bird which some cruel boy has torn from the nest and almost killedit is not fledged yet, and cannot fly, and it lies down to die, trampled in the mire in the streetsthat is my heart without Christ. But see that other bird! The cage-door is opened, its wings vibrate, it sings within all its might. and flies up to talk with the sunthat is my heart when I have the conscious presence of my Lord Jesus Christ! I only bring in my own consciousness because I do not know yours; but I think I will now venture to say that every believer here will admit it is the same with him
"'Midst darkest shades if he appear
My dawning is begun;
He is my soul's bright morning star,
And he my rising sun.
| 2008/1/10 16:21||Profile|
| Re: Do You Know Him? Pt. 5|
Do You Know Him?
January 31st, 1864
C. H. SPURGEON
"That I may know him."Philippians 3:10.
IV. I shall close by urging you, dearly beloved, who know the Lord, to take this desire of the apostle, and by exhorting you, make it your own, "That I may know him." I wish I had time this morningtime will flyI wish I had time to urge and press you, believers, onward to seek to know him. Paul, you see, gave up everything for thisyou will be seeking what is worth having. There can be no mistake about this. If Paul will renounce all, there must be a reward which is worthy of the sacrifice. If you have any fears, if you seek Christ and find him, they will be removed. You complain that you do not feel the guilt of sin; that you cannot humble yourself enough. The sight of Christ is the very best means of setting sin in its true colors. There is no repenting like that which comics from a look of Christ's eye: the Lord turned and looked upon Peter, and he went out and wept bitterly. So it is not a sight of the law, it is the sight of Christ looking upon us, which will break our hearts.
There is nothing like this to fill you with courage. When Dr. Andrew Reed found some difficulties in the founding of one of his orphan asylums, he sat down and drew upon a little piece of paper the cross, and then he said to himself, "What, despair in the face of the cross?" and then he drew a ring round the cross, and wrote in it nil desperandum! and took it for his coat of arms. Oh, there cannot be any despair in the presence of the cross. Thou dying Lamb, didst thou endure the cross, despising the shame, and shall I talk of difficulties when thy glory is in the way? God forbid! O holy face, bedewed with bloody sweat, I pledge myself in thy solemn and awful presence, that though this face of mine should be bedewed with sweat of the like sort, to accomplish any labor upon which thou shalt put me; by thy will and in thy strength, I will not shrink from the task. A sight of Christ, brethren, will keep you from despondency, and doubts, and despair. A sight of Christ! How shall I stir you to it? It will fire you to duty; it will deliver you from temptation; it will, in fact, make you like him. A man is known by his company; and if you have become acquainted with Christ, and know him, you will be sure to reflect his light. It is because the moon hath converse within the sun, that she hath any light for this dark world's night; and if you talk with Christ, the Sun, he will shine on you so gloriously, that you. like the moon, shall reflect his light, and the dark night of this world shall be enlightened by your radiance. The Lord help us to know him.
But I do seem, this morning, to have been talking to you about him, and not to have brought him forward. O that I knew how to introduce you to him! You who do not love him, O that I could make you seek after him! But you who do love him and have trusted in him, O that I could make you hunger and thirst until you were filled with him! There he is, nailed to his cross, sufferingoh! how much!for you; there he is, risen, ascended, pleading before the throne of God for you. Here he is: "Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." Here he is, waiting to be comforted with your company, desiring communion with you, panting that his sister, his spouse, would be no longer a stranger to him. Here he is, waiting to be gracious, saying, "Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Come, Christian, come, let this be thy desire, "That I may know him."
And you who do not know him, and have not loved him, I pray you, breathe this prayer with me, " Lord, be merciful to me a sinner." O sinner, he is a gentle Christ; mine is a loving Savior, and they that seek him early shall find him. May you seek and find him, for his name's sake. Amen.
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