TOPIC: REJOICING IN THE PROMISES
TEXT: HEB. 11:13
''These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth''
To faith, promise is performance; faith rejoices in the promises as one does in the performances theteof: this is becasuse God's promises are not different from His performances. Whatever God Has promised, same is already done. He who does not, thetefore, rejoice in bare promises as he would do at the performance of it, is taken to not have faith: for faith is the substantiating of what is hoped for; faith brings what is far into the hand; faith makes what is yet to come to be in the present; for this, faith considers done whatever is promised. Faith talks of what it hopes for as though it is already done. Faith praises God more than it prays and complains to Him: he who praises, declares that he has in hand already the object of his hope. When Jehosaphat was faced with an eminent invasion by three Nations, at the words of Jehaziel, the prophet, he took to praise as though the victory is already won. He who praise notes manifestly that the victory is won. The promise puts him upon praise as performance does. To faith God's promises are not what He intends to do but what He has already done: this is the proper motion of unfeigned and living faith. Faith, robbust faith in the promise, puts songs on the lips, harp in the hand, joy in the heart and makes the feet to move nimbly on the dancing floor, though the perfomance is not yet in view. That faith that would not rejoice at bare promises, is not the faith of those born of God. When a promise comes, perfomance also comes: Esau and Jacob were born the same day: so the promise and performance! Their mother nursed them together, fed them on her kneels toghether and had them slept with her on the same bed every night. Friends, we must nurse the promise and performance together in our bosom: these two are twins in the eyes of faith. If any man's view is different from this, let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. (James 1:7) To be continued in the evening contemplation