Christian Love 23: Loving is not a Grievous Burden

by Hugh Binning

When a Christian looks within his own heart, he finds an inclination and desire to have the love of others, even though his conscience witness to him he doesn’t deserve it.  He finds and heartily approves of that good and righteous command of God, that others should love him.  Now he may persuade himself, it is so sweet and pleasant to me to be loved by others even though I am conscious that I’ve wronged them? It has such a beauty in my eyes, while I am the object of it? Why then should it be a hard and grievous burden to me to love others, though they have wronged me, and deserve it no more than I did?

Why doesn’t it have the same amiable aspect, when my brother is the object of it?  Certainly there’s no other reason but, I am yet carnal, and do not have that fundamental law of nature yet written again upon my heart, “What you would have others do to you, do it to them,” —Matthew 7:12.  If I am convinced there is an equity and beauty in that command, which charges others to love me, forgive me, and forbear me, and restore me in meekness, why should it be a grievous command that I should pay that debt of love and tenderness to others?  1st John 5:3—”For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments, and his commandments are not grievous.”

 

 


This common domain work’s language has been modernized in places by this site.

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R.C. Chapman’s S.O.S. 1:14

By R.C. Chapman

“My Beloved is unto me as a cluster of camphire in the vineyards of Engedi.” Song of Solomon 1:14

In this wilderness, O my Lord! Thou hast planted Thy vineyard—the Church, for Thy name, and Thou hast fenced it and enclosed it; Thy glory is round about us. We have walls of salvation which all our enemies cannot overthrow.  O glorious security! Shining forth in the midst of the adversary’s fury and mischief and cunning!

What thanks worthy of the benefit canst thou render, O my soul! Because of thy safety, in the midst of manifold dangers, within the fence of thy Lord’s grace and power. Those above—dismissed from battle—do they boast any other keeper than Jesus, who is thy boast? If left by Him, they would unassaulted fall, and sink into destruction: now they stand in the Son of God, the Shepherd of Israel; and thou, my soul, dost stand in Him, and by Him prevail over thine enemies!

He not only maketh thee safe, but showeth thee aslo thy safety. Thank Him for faith—thank Him again for assurance of heart before Him! He has separated thee unto Himself, and would have thee dwell alone while in the midst of His enemies.  Seek, then, no rest nor abiding city here, but retreat the bosom of Jesus; there lodge and rest.  Lord! I know it is Thy will and joy that so I should do; and since Thou hast given my Thy Spirit, and taught me to walk I the Spirit, my soul counts all things but Thyself as the small dust of the balance.

Man walketh in a vain shadow, and disquieteth himself in vain: I marvel at the grave folly of the wise, and the childish strife of the great ones of the earth. My heart pities them, prays for them; for I know they are but as hewers of wood and drawers of water to the congregation of the Lord.  They sink into brutes, while they would be as gods.  O Lord, I leave them their portion in this world, and find rest and peace in Thee! O teach me to sit at Thy feet, and keep me there! Let me dread the proud look, and every high thought; ever let Thy mind be in me.

Thou didst humble Thyself out of love; and in Thy grace, being rich in Thy Godhead, Thou becamest poor. And shall not I sink with Thee? Lord, open to me Thine humiliation and poverty; Thy low estate, when Thou was a “worm and no man” –Psalm 22:6, and let me be fashioned after Thine image, as I behold Thy stoop of love; so shall my heart be contrite, my spirit meek and lowly, and Thou shalt be unto me daily a cluster of camphire, that revives the spirit of the humble and the heart of the contrite!

R.C. Chapman’s S.O.S. 1:8, 2/2

By R.C. Chapman

 

“If thou know not, O thou fairest among women, go thy way forth by the footsteps of the flock, and feed thy kids beside the shepherds’ tents.”  Song of Solomon 1:8

 

He, for thee, was taken from prison and from judgment; He, for thee, stood surety.  Be of good courage, shout aloud: “I glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me”. —2nd Corinthians 12:9–  Cry aloud the cry of faith: “I can do all things through Christ, which stengtheneth me”. —Philippians 4:13

Thy case, my soul, stands not alone; the same afflictions have been accomplished at all times in each member of Christ.  Of old was it said: “Many are the afflictions of the righteous”; —Psalm 34:19– “The Lord trieth the righteous”. —Psalm 11:5– In this present time of peace—when persecutors are held in with bit  and bridle, so that the earth is not drunk with the blood of the saints—even now, go join thyself to the flock, draw near the shepherds’ tents; thou wilt see the poor and afflicted people still poor and afflicted, though rich and blessed, for they trust in the name of the Lord.  And, indeed, thou lovest the temple and dwelling place of Jesus, which is His body, the Church; He entered and sits there upon His throne, high and lifted up, and is the glory in midst.  There He shines forth, not confounding us, but giving light and life to all; all eyes wait upon Him, and He satisfies us from His fullness.

My soul, consider thy profit and blessedness in dwelling by the shepherds’ tents, for it is thine both to hear in the Church, and, in fitting time, to speak.  Seek humility form thy Lord, and thou shalt be able both to learn and teach, to give and receive, to weep with them that weep, and to rejoice with them that do rejoice.  So wilt thou sweetly beguile the time until thy brief course be fulfilled, and shalt daily grow up into Christ, thy Head in all things.

 

 

R.C. Chapman’s S.O.S. 1:8: 1/2

By R.C. Chapman

“If thou know not, O thou fairest among women, go thy way forth by the footsteps of the flock, and feed thy kids beside the shepherds’ tents.”  Song of Solomon 1:8

 

 

Thine heart, O my Lord! inclines Thine ear to hear.  Thou hast compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way.  Thou knewest no darkness of error; Thou wast holy, and art the same yesterday, and today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8)

Thou art our near kinsman; thy love and grace made the stoop; thou wast made flesh, and art the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Majesty on high.  Thou lovest to show us the bosom of the Father, all whose counsels are in Thee fulfilled, and whose utmost glory is manifest in Thee.

Thou art my Prophet, thou Lamb of God!  I love to learn, because of the lesson, and because of the Teacher.  Lord, my soul hangeth upon Thy lips; I cannot know my path but by Thy light, nor pursue my way but as Thou dost sustain my feebleness and check my wandering.

My need compels me, Thy love constrains me, therefore I draw near; I boast no wisdom; I confess my foolishness, and Thou upbraidest me now; rather dost Thou commend me, for by my poverty Thy riches are manifest, and Thou delightest to show me all the lovingkindness of Thine heart.

Behold me, Lord!  The work of Thine hands—not Thy creature only, Thy new creature also, quickened when dead in trespass and sins, without will or power to take hold of Thee, to look unto Thee, or to touch even the hem of Thy garment.

Now, by Thy Spirit quickened and created anew, behold me, wrought by Thyself after Thine own image.  Forsake not, then, the work of Thine own hands! Thou wilt not leave me; Thine eyes look with joyfulness upon me, as with a heart above a mother’s; Thou, abiding in Thine own peace, dost consider me, and watchest over me with tenderness divine.

Thou dost in equal truth and love entitle Thy sister-spouse the fairest among women; each member fair and lovely in Thy sight, and I, among the rest, can say: “Though black, I am comely” (Song of Solomon 1:5). But, “Tell me, O Thou whom my soul loveth, where thou feedest” (Song of Solomon 1:7).  I know Thou hearest me; what then is Thine answer?  Hear it, O my soul; thy Lord, thy Beloved, bids the go thy way by the footsteps of the flock.

Hast thou dreamed a dream of a bed of roses and path of flowers?  Through much tribulation must thou enter the kingdom.  Start now aside; see the footprints of thy Lord.  Such was His cup as only He Himself could drink and drain, full of gall and wormwood of thy sin and curse: and now, thou art forever free.


Excerpts of Mercy

This is 1:8-1/2

1:1           1:4          1:5          1:6          1:7           1:8-1/2 —2/2          1:9          1:10          1:11          1:12          1:13          1:14          1:15          1:16

Excerpts of Mercy

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Richard Baxter

The Conviction of Sin

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Hugh Binning

Christ’s Righteousness

Christian Love: T.O.C.

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John Bunyan

Merciful Appeal to Sinners

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R.C. Chapman

Meditations on the Song of Solomon: T.O.C.

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Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ, Ch. 1

Thomas Manton’s Merciful Appeals

John Newton “Benefit of Affliction”

John Newton “Those mistakes, blemishes and faults in others”

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Richard Sibbes Sweet Drops:

1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8          9

Life of Faith: T.O.C.

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Our Humiliation

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Philippians 3:20-21

For our citizenship is in heaven, from where we also wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;  who will change the body of our humiliation to be conformed to the body of his glory, according to the working by which he is able even to subject all things to himself.


 

Though most all of us live as if we are in denial of this truth.  We are now in bodies of our humiliation.  We are as caterpillars wrapped within these natural bodies of this fallen world.  Many and even many believers will attempt to convince us to seek our own greatness rising out of this great mass of mediocrity.  We seek to cast an image of ourselves, as of excellence, of beauty, of dignity not possible for us now.   We many times carry ourselves with a high honor and dignity, unsuited for any of us, now.  This high esteeming of ourselves is not good.  We are as if worms loving distinction, honor and glory for ourselves.  We are seeking glory in our own shame.   One worm attempting to lift itself to a place of honor and dignity above other worms.  We become those who love judging, love making distinction, attempting to accentuate our own greatness and or worthiness over others, at the expense of love, mercy, and graciousness.

This state of humiliation can be more graciously accepted as our low position right now, this humiliation which clings to us, now, but not forever.  We do have a great desire to escape this, however we can not escape this to the freedom we desire, yet.  Coming to Jesus and trusting Him as our Savior and Deliverer, can provide much escape, as much as our faith and trust allows.  For many of us, our faith is however small and weak.  I am for accepting ourselves and others in this common low state as brothers and sisters in our fallen state, that is accepting others as having an imperfect faith in a perfect Savior.(I am not including those without faith in Jesus)  There is a sense of hopefulness that can be found in realizing this truth.  We can fight our enemy the great accuser with this truth.  We can praise God, for the mercy and love He has revealed in Jesus.  We do not have to meet unrealistic and sometimes meaningless expectations our enemy likes to burden, and attack us with.  We may undo the enemy’s work by giving one another much mercy and graciousness as the depths of discouragement and weakness of faith, I believe, can go very far for God’s true children.  Encouraging one another to look to the true Excellent One, Distinguished One, Great One.  The One and only hope of our great escape from this cocoon of corruption and destruction.  Encouraging one another to deeper faith, trust and love for our Savior and Deliverer, which will free us more.  Encouraging one another to less care and worry over the things those who follow the world are so greatly concerned and moved by.  Let’s not deceive ourselves, that the freeing from this cocoon occurs completely in our natural lives, let’s not judge others with unrealistic expectations, and harshness.  We are able to receive a new life, receive the Excellent One within us, however it is almost as if many times, He is trapped within the cocoon of our own sin, weakness, doubt and lack of faith.  We can with hope look to that day of our total freeing, when Jesus will be fully glorified for all to see, and we will be glorified with Him.  We can trust that though we are in this cocoon of corruption now, he safely holds us, cocoon and all, keeping us until our full redemption and freedom.

We can look to Jesus, look to God, (Father, Son, Spirit) for our change. Accepting His true judgment, rather than attempting to create our own imaginary distinctions, which falsely elevate some while devaluing others.    Behold, all those who are incensed against you will be disappointed and confounded.  Those who strive with you will be like nothing, and shall perish.   You will seek them, and won’t find them, even those who contend with you.  Those who war against you will be as nothing, as a non-existent thing.   For I, Yahweh your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Don’t be afraid.  I will help you.’  Don’t be afraid, you worm Jacob, and you men of Israel.  I will help you,” says Yahweh, “and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.  (Isaiah 41:11-14)