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“Follow After Love”

It’s not in redemption that one “changes . . . from glory to glory,” for once applied it fully saves; which will show in our permanent lifestyle. It’s our earthly walk that manifests in escalating glories all that we already are (1Jo 4:17), and all that we already have (2Pe 1:3) in Christ! The present “divine nature” indwelt by the believer will not be any newer than it is now. Therefore the primary differences in the resurrected saint’s essence will be the absence of “the old man,” and the newness of the finally “redeemed body” (Rom 8:23).

NC

 

 

“Follow After Love”

 

“I have espoused you to one Husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ” (2 Cor 11:2). Paul’s song accounts for all that is in Solomon’s Song. The Father looks upon the believer as altogether lovely. A sinner in himself, he has, by faith, taken on him the beauty of the Lord Jesus. He is “in Him.” He is “accepted in the Beloved.” Faith alone gives him all this comeliness. He has been baptized into the Lord Jesus, and put Him on. This is the beauty of the believer; and he is lovely in the Lord Jesus’ eye. Indeed in this form of beauty there can be no spot. The very “best robe” in the Father’s house is on Him. For it is the Lord Jesus Himself that the believer is arrayed with. Such harmonies are there between the Son of Solomon, the Gospels and the Pauline Epistles.

We are naturally prone (due to the indwelling old man—NC) to be suspicious of any offer to make us happy in our Father. Because our moral sense—our natural conscience, tells us of our having lost all right, even to His ordinary blessings. Yet, in the revelation of God, faith reads our abundant title to be near Him and happy with Him, though our natural conscience and our sense of the fitness of things would have it otherwise. Faith feeds where the moral sensibilities of the natural mind would count it presuming to tread.

The Song of Solomon opens with strong and fervent desire toward Himself; reaching forth to apprehend Him in some more intimate manner that had been preciously understood. It is as though the saint has been conscious of being in a lower condition than would now satisfy. For at times the soul rests itself simply on the firm ground of doctrines, such as “the Blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth from all sin.” It is the simple and sure power of such truth that alone answers, at times, the need of the soul. But again, at times, the ground under our feet, as believers, is understood and rested on and it is the Lord Jesus Himself that the heart desires.

She had been keeping the vineyards (Son of Solomon 1:6)—attending to things abroad—but now was learning that her own vineyard had been neglected; and the deeper things of personal fellowship are longed for. The saint is leaving Martha’s and taking Mary’s place, hungering to feed under His own eye and from His own hand, not another’s. Now it is conscious of being more at home, more about its own vineyard; as though it had left the Martha place, “busy about with many things” (Luk 10:40—still unnecessarily preoccupied with much of this life—NC) and assuming the Mary place at the feet of the Lord Jesus in personal fellowship.

There is a great influence upon the soul to be occupied with such affections (Christ’s fellowship—NC). It strengthens and sanctifies—for all question of our standing is anticipated, and our energy in meeting temptation is increased, and thus the liberty of our soul is secured. For how can the thought of condemnation or the temptation to defilement be entertained, when the believer is seeking to reach more into the light and joy of such communion and fellowship as this? Does it not lead him into more than a mere escape from the spirit of bondage, or from practical sin (sin commissions—NC)? Is it not the divine method of making him more than conqueror? “For we all with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord” (The Scriptures are “as a mirror” of Christ, which shows us what we are to look like – Jam 1:22, 23. Thus the more we look into it, the more we will remember how we are supposed to look. 2Cor 3:18).

 

- J G Bellett (1795–1864)

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