Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Do I love God for nothing?

Richard Sibbes: "Many men will be glad to own Christ to be great by him, but as Augustine complains in his time, Christ Jesus is not loved for his own sake but for other things that he brings with him, peace, plenty etc. as far as [owning Christ] stands with these contentments. If Christ and the world part once, it will be known which we followed. In times of peace this is hardly discerned." (Second Sermon on the Song of Songs)

This is basically what the Book of Job is all about. Does Job love God just because of what He has given him or because of who the LORD God is in Himself? "The Satan, for all his malice, is doing something necessary for the glory of God. In some deep way it is necessary for it to be publically seen by the whole universe that God is worthy of the worship of a man and that God’s worth is in no way dependent on God’s gifts." (Christopher Ash, Job: The Wisdom of the Cross, Crossway)

Jonathan Edwards, after commenting on Job 1:9-10 concludes: "the first foundation of a true love to God, is that whereby he is in himself lovely, or worthy to be loved, or the supreme loveliness of his nature... How can that be true love of beauty and brightness which is not for beauty and brightness' sake? How can that be a true prizing of that which is in itself infinitely worthy and precious, which is not for the sake of its worthiness and preciousness? ...They whose affection to God is founded first on his profitableness to them, their affection begins at the wrong end; they regard God only for the utmost limit of the stream of divine good, where it touches them, and reaches their interest; and have no respect to that infinite glory of God's nature... A [merely] natural principle of self-love may be the foundation of great affections towards God and Christ, without seeing anything of the beauty and glory of the divine nature." (Religious Affections emphasis added)

How much is my religion still infected with self-love? Lord have mercy and open my eyes to Your beauty.

No comments:

Post a Comment