Humility and Love

Humility and Love, 1 001

 

Humility

A humble man can come to no harm; he will be evertrusting in the Lord because he finds nothing in himself to trust in, while he gives great glory to God by trusting much in Him. God gives him great grace, and this is to keep alive an abiding sense of what he is in himself; to show him his ignorance and helplessness, to open him daily more of the mystery of iniquity, to discover to him the stirrings of corruption which others feel not, and to make him sensible of these, even in duties and ordinances, that he may loath himself and his very best works. These are the fruits of true grace, and he that is under the teachings of the Holy Spirit will abound in them. The more God does in the heart, the more He humbles it. The great design of His grace is to bring the proud sinner low, and then to keep him low.

He hath brought us low, we do not like to be kept there, we want to get up again: our foolish desire is, that He may do something in us for which we have a good opinion of ourselves; and so with this thought we are apt to wish, O that I were more holy! O that I could pray better! O that I was more spiritual in duties! O that I was thankful enough! If you could come to the true nature of these wishes (precious as they appear), you would find them to spring from the secret workings of a proud, self-righteous spirit; take off their cloak of holiness, and their meaning is this, “I wish God would give me something for which I might be pleased with myself.” If this was the case, would not the eye be turned inward upon this very good self, and be drawn off from looking unto Jesus? And so far as self is made something, Christ is made nothing! You may depend upon this as one of the surest axioms of divinity: Whatsoever it be that makes you pleased with yourself, that is not true grace, and whatsoever makes you displeased with yourself, is not true grace, unless it brings you humble to Christ and makes you put more trust in Him.

 

The Lord teach you these things practically. I have learned them by long experience. Though I know but little, yet I am getting on in Christ’s school, and hope soon to be in the lowest form, for there we learn most and fastest; we there depend entirely upon the teaching of our Divine Master, who reveals His secrets to none but babes. A new-born babe depends on the care of its parents, so must we depend on God, on Christ our Prophet and Teacher—and when we are brought thus humble, He will then make known to us what He hides from the wise and prudent. I would therefore wish you the humblest man upon earth: then, not only you may know most, but love most. He that feels his sins and miseries, his vileness and unprofitableness, with the deepest loathings of them is in the fittest way to love Christ. If he is an experienced believer, the feelings of these sins and miseries will make Christ more precious; the more he finds of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, the more will he trust in Christ’s righteousness; and the more misery he knows, the more he desires salvation: all will make Jesus more dear and lovely. His own vileness sets forth Christ’s grace; his unworthiness the worthiness of the Lamb, the sufficiency of Jesus, who is all-in-all.—WILLIAM ROMAINE

brotherly

BROTHERLY LOVE

A.W. Pink

“Let brotherly love continue” [Heb 13:1]

Brotherly love is that spiritual benevolence and affectionate solicitude which Christians have one toward another, desiring and seeking their highest interests. The varied characteristics of it are beautifully delineated in 1 Corinthians 13. In the opening verse of Hebrews 13 the apostle exhorts unto the maintenance of the same, “Let brotherly love continue.”

Negatively, that means, Let us be constantly on our guard against those things which are likely to interrupt its flow. Positively, it signifies, Let us be diligent in employing those means which are calculated to keep it in a healthy state. It is along these two lines that our responsibility here is to be discharged, and therefore it is of first importance that due heed be given thereto.

We therefore propose to point out some of the main hindrances and obstacles to the continuance of brotherly love, and then mention some of the aids and helps to the furtherance of the same. May the blessed Spirit direct the writer’s thoughts and give the reader to lay to heart whatever is of Himself.

The root hindrance to the exercise of brotherly love is self-love—to be so occupied with number one that the interests of others are lost sight of. In Proverbs 30:15 we read, “The horseleech hath two daughters crying Give, give.” This repulsive creature has two forks in her tongue, which she employs for gorging herself in the blood of her unhappy victim. Spiritually the “horseleech” represents self-love and her two daughters are self-righteousness, and self-pity. As the horseleech is never satisfied, often continuing to gorge itself until it bursts, so self-love is never contented, crying “Give, give.” All the blessings and mercies of God are perverted by making them to minister unto self.

Now the antidote for this evil spirit is for the heart to be engaged with the example which Christ has left us. He came not to be ministered unto, but to minister unto others. He pleased not Himself, but ever “went about doing good.” He was tireless in relieving distress and seeking the welfare of all with whom He came into contact. Then “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). If brotherly love is to continue self must be denied.

Inseparably connected with self-love is pride, and the fostering of pride is fatal to the cultivation of brotherly affection. The majority, if not all, of the petty grievances among Christians, are to be traced back to this evil root. “Love suffereth long,” but pride is terribly impatient. “Love envieth not,” but pride is intensely jealous. “Love seeketh not her own,” but pride ever desires gratification. “Love seeketh not her own,” but pride demands constant attention from others.

“Love beareth all things,” but pride is resentful of the slightest injury. “Love endureth all things,” but pride is offended if a brother fails to greet him on the street. Pride must be mortified if brotherly love is to flourish. Therefore the first injunction of Christ to those who come unto Him for rest is, “Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart.”

Another great enemy to brotherly love is a sectarian spirit, and this evil is far more widespread than many suppose. Our readers would be surprised if they knew how often a sample copy of this magazine is despised by those who have a reputation for being stalwarts in the Faith and as possessing a relish for spiritual things, yet because this paper is not issued by their denomination or “circle of fellowship” it is at once relegated to the waste-paper basket.

Alas, how frequently is a spirit of partisanship mistaken for brotherly love: so long as a person “believes our doctrines” and is willing to “join our church,” he is received with open arms. On the other hand, no matter how sound in the faith a man may be, nor how godly his walk, if he refuses to affiliate himself with some particular group of professing Christians, he is looked upon with suspicion and given the cold shoulder. But such things ought not to be: they betray a very low state of spirituality.

We are far from advocating the entering into familiar fellowship with everyone who claims to be a Christian—Scipture warns us to “lay hands suddenly on no man” (1 Tim. 5:22), for all is not gold that glitters; and perhaps there never was a day in which empty profession abounded so much as it does now. Yet there is a happy medium between being taken in by every impostor who comes along, and refusing to believe that there are any genuine saints left upon earth. Surely a tree may be known by its fruits.

When we meet with one in whom we can discern the image of Christ, whether that one be a member of our party or not, there should our affections be fixed. “Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us, to the glory of God” (Rom. 15:7): it is our bounden duty to love all whom Christ loves, It is utterly vain that we boast of our orthodoxy or of the “light” we have, if brotherly love be not shown by us to the feeblest member of Christ’s body who crosses our path.

There are many other things which are serious obstacles to the maintenance of brotherly love, yet we must not do more than barely mention them: the love of the world; failure to mortify the lusts of the flesh in our souls; being unduly wrapped up in the members of our own family, so that those related to us by the blood of Christ have not that place in our affections which they ought; ignorance of the directions in which it should be exercised and of the proper duties which it calls for; forgetfulness of the foundation of it, which is a mutual interest in the grace of God, that we are fellow-members of the Household of Faith; a readiness to listen to idle gossip, which in most instances, is a “giving place to the Devil,” who accuses the brethren day and night.

But there is one other serious hindrance to the continuance of brotherly love which we will notice in a little more detail, namely, impatience.

By impatience we mean a lack of forbearance. True brotherly love is a reflection of God’s love for us, and He loves His people not for their native attractiveness, but for Christ’s sake; and therefore does He love them in spite of their ugliness and vileness. God is “longsuffering to us-ward” (2 Pet. 3:9), bearing with our crookedness, pardoning our iniquities, healing our diseases, and His word to us is, “Be ye therefore followers (emulators) of God, as dear children, and walk in love” (Eph. 5:1, 2).

We are to love the saints for what we can see of Christ in them; yes, love them, and for that reason—in spite of all their ignorance, perverseness, ill-temper, obstinacy, fretfulness. It is the image of God in them not their wealth, amiability, social position—which is the magnet that attracts a renewed heart toward them.

“Forbearing one another in love” (Eph. 4:2). False love is glad of any specious excuse for throwing off the garb that sits so loosely and uncomfortably upon it. Ahitophel was glad of a pretext to forsake David, whom he hated in his heart, although with his mouth he continued to show much love. “Forbearing one another in love:” that love which a little silence or neglect can destroy never came from God, that love which a few blasts of malice from the lips of a new acquaintance will wither, is not worth possessing! Remember, dear brother, God suffers our love for one another to be tried and tested—-as He does our faith—or there would be no need for this exhortation “forbearing one another in love.”

The most spiritual Christian on earth is full of infirmities, and the best way of enduring them is to frequently and honestly remind yourself that you also are full of faults and failings.

Read the full chapter –
http://www.pbministries.org/books/pink/Hebrews/hebrews_107.htm

exhorts unto the maintenance of the same, “Let brotherly love continue.”

Negatively, that means, Let us be constantly on our guard against those things which are likely to interrupt its flow. Positively, it signifies, Let us be diligent in employing those means which are calculated to keep it in a healthy state. It is along these two lines that our responsibility here is to be discharged, and therefore it is of first importance that due heed be given thereto.

We therefore propose to point out some of the main hindrances and obstacles to the continuance of brotherly love, and then mention some of the aids and helps to the furtherance of the same. May the blessed Spirit direct the writer’s thoughts and give the reader to lay to heart whatever is of Himself.

The root hindrance to the exercise of brotherly love is self-love—to be so occupied with number one that the interests of others are lost sight of. In Proverbs 30:15 we read, “The horseleech hath two daughters crying Give, give.” This repulsive creature has two forks in her tongue, which she employs for gorging herself in the blood of her unhappy victim. Spiritually the “horseleech” represents self-love and her two daughters are self-righteousness, and self-pity. As the horseleech is never satisfied, often continuing to gorge itself until it bursts, so self-love is never contented, crying “Give, give.” All the blessings and mercies of God are perverted by making them to minister unto self.

Now the antidote for this evil spirit is for the heart to be engaged with the example which Christ has left us. He came not to be ministered unto, but to minister unto others. He pleased not Himself, but ever “went about doing good.” He was tireless in relieving distress and seeking the welfare of all with whom He came into contact. Then “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). If brotherly love is to continue self must be denied.

Inseparably connected with self-love is pride, and the fostering of pride is fatal to the cultivation of brotherly affection. The majority, if not all, of the petty grievances among Christians, are to be traced back to this evil root. “Love suffereth long,” but pride is terribly impatient. “Love envieth not,” but pride is intensely jealous. “Love seeketh not her own,” but pride ever desires gratification. “Love seeketh not her own,” but pride demands constant attention from others.

“Love beareth all things,” but pride is resentful of the slightest injury. “Love endureth all things,” but pride is offended if a brother fails to greet him on the street. Pride must be mortified if brotherly love is to flourish. Therefore the first injunction of Christ to those who come unto Him for rest is, “Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart.”

Another great enemy to brotherly love is a sectarian spirit, and this evil is far more widespread than many suppose. Our readers would be surprised if they knew how often a sample copy of this magazine is despised by those who have a reputation for being stalwarts in the Faith and as possessing a relish for spiritual things, yet because this paper is not issued by their denomination or “circle of fellowship” it is at once relegated to the waste-paper basket.

Alas, how frequently is a spirit of partisanship mistaken for brotherly love: so long as a person “believes our doctrines” and is willing to “join our church,” he is received with open arms. On the other hand, no matter how sound in the faith a man may be, nor how godly his walk, if he refuses to affiliate himself with some particular group of professing Christians, he is looked upon with suspicion and given the cold shoulder. But such things ought not to be: they betray a very low state of spirituality.

We are far from advocating the entering into familiar fellowship with everyone who claims to be a Christian—Scipture warns us to “lay hands suddenly on no man” (1 Tim. 5:22), for all is not gold that glitters; and perhaps there never was a day in which empty profession abounded so much as it does now. Yet there is a happy medium between being taken in by every impostor who comes along, and refusing to believe that there are any genuine saints left upon earth. Surely a tree may be known by its fruits.

When we meet with one in whom we can discern the image of Christ, whether that one be a member of our party or not, there should our affections be fixed. “Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us, to the glory of God” (Rom. 15:7): it is our bounden duty to love all whom Christ loves, It is utterly vain that we boast of our orthodoxy or of the “light” we have, if brotherly love be not shown by us to the feeblest member of Christ’s body who crosses our path.

There are many other things which are serious obstacles to the maintenance of brotherly love, yet we must not do more than barely mention them: the love of the world; failure to mortify the lusts of the flesh in our souls; being unduly wrapped up in the members of our own family, so that those related to us by the blood of Christ have not that place in our affections which they ought; ignorance of the directions in which it should be exercised and of the proper duties which it calls for; forgetfulness of the foundation of it, which is a mutual interest in the grace of God, that we are fellow-members of the Household of Faith; a readiness to listen to idle gossip, which in most instances, is a “giving place to the Devil,” who accuses the brethren day and night.

But there is one other serious hindrance to the continuance of brotherly love which we will notice in a little more detail, namely, impatience.

By impatience we mean a lack of forbearance. True brotherly love is a reflection of God’s love for us, and He loves His people not for their native attractiveness, but for Christ’s sake; and therefore does He love them in spite of their ugliness and vileness. God is “longsuffering to us-ward” (2 Pet. 3:9), bearing with our crookedness, pardoning our iniquities, healing our diseases, and His word to us is, “Be ye therefore followers (emulators) of God, as dear children, and walk in love” (Eph. 5:1, 2).

We are to love the saints for what we can see of Christ in them; yes, love them, and for that reason—in spite of all their ignorance, perverseness, ill-temper, obstinacy, fretfulness. It is the image of God in them not their wealth, amiability, social position—which is the magnet that attracts a renewed heart toward them.

“Forbearing one another in love” (Eph. 4:2). False love is glad of any specious excuse for throwing off the garb that sits so loosely and uncomfortably upon it. Ahitophel was glad of a pretext to forsake David, whom he hated in his heart, although with his mouth he continued to show much love. “Forbearing one another in love:” that love which a little silence or neglect can destroy never came from God, that love which a few blasts of malice from the lips of a new acquaintance will wither, is not worth possessing! Remember, dear brother, God suffers our love for one another to be tried and tested—-as He does our faith—or there would be no need for this exhortation “forbearing one another in love.”

The most spiritual Christian on earth is full of infirmities, and the best way of enduring them is to frequently and honestly remind yourself that you also are full of faults and failings.

Read the full chapter –
http://www.pbministries.org/books/pink/Hebrews/hebrews_107.htm

A missionary in South Africa observed lepers at work. “He noticed two particularly, sowing peas in the field. One had no hands; the other had no feet, these members being wasted away by disease. The one who lacked the hands was carrying the other who lacked the feet, upon his back; and he again carried the bag of seed, and dropped a pea every now and then, which the other pressed into the ground with his feet. And so they managed the work of one man between the two. Such should be the true union of the members of Christ’s body, in which all the members should have the same care one for another.”—

“As the rays come from the sun, and yet are not the sun; even so our love and pity, though they are not God, but merely a poor, weak image and reflection of Him, yet from Him alone they come. If there is mercy in our hearts, it comes from the fountain of mercy. If there is the light of love in us, it is a ray from the full sun of His love.—C. Kingsley

On Pride, the Opposite of Humility

“It thrusts proud Nebuchadnezzar out of men’s society, proud Saul out of his kingdom, proud Adam out of paradise, proud Haman out of court, proud Lucifer out of heaven.”—Henry Smith

“He who gives himself airs of importance exhibits the credentials of impotence.”—Lavater

Baseless Pride: “Philip, having made himself master of Potidoea, received three messengers in one day: the first brought him an account of a great victory gained over the Illyrians by his general, Parmenio; the second told him he was proclaimed the victor at the Olympic Games; and the third informed him of the birth of Alexander. But there was nothing in all these events that ought to have fed his vanity, or that would have justified, the pride of Philip; since, as an elegant writer remarks, ‘for the first, he was indebted to his general; for the second to his horse; and his wife is shrewdly suspected of having helped him in the third.’ ”—Colton

“God crowns with mercy; but a swollen head is not fit to have that crown put upon it.”—Jenkyn

“Satan is subtle: he will make a man proud that he is not proud.”                                                                                           —Brooks

“Remember what thou wert before thy birth,—nothing; what thou wert for many years after,—weakness; what in all thy life,—a great sinner; what in all thy excellencies,—a mere debtor to God, to thy parents, to the earth, to all the creatures. Upon these or the like meditations, if we dwell, and frequently retire to them, we shall see nothing more reasonable than to be humble, and nothing more foolish than to be proud.”—Taylor

“Alexander’s great success so inflated his pride, that he despised his father, put on the costly Persian garb, and finally declared himself to be the son of Jupiter.”

“The peacock, beholding only its gay feathers, may be inflamed with pride; but a look at its ugly feet will soon abate this. So with men. If there is beauty, wealth, fame, success, or any other thing that will engender pride, there is also some counterpart to it to keep us humble.”—New Cyclopaedia of Illustrations, 1870

 

Visit this Blog: michaeljeshurun.wordpress.com

 

“. . . For Thou was slain, and hast redeemed us to God

by Thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue

and people, and nation.” (Revelation. 5:9)

 

“The voice of my Beloved! Behold, He

cometh leaping upon the mountains,

skipping upon the hills.”

(song of Solomon 2:8)

 

“True love never grows weary. Who would be loved must love. Love warms more than a thousand fires. Love rules without law.—Selected

 

“I say, through the grace given me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think.” (Romans 12:3)

 

“For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.” (1 John 3:11)

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