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"FAITH saves us; but how?-by making us aware of Christ, who saves. Faith does not make things what they are but shows us them as they are in Christ. Certain systems lay a pressure upon the subjective side greater than the spirit of man is at all times able to bear; working out all things from the depths of individual consciousness as if truths were not there at all until they are manifestly there for us. Happy for us if Christ can look there and find his own image reflected, however faintly; but we must look at Him, at the sun in the heavens, not at the sun in the brook, its broken and ever varying reflection." - Dora Greenwell.
"IF we can learn artght how Christ was sealed, we shall learn how we are sealed. The sealing of Christ by the Father was the communication of the Holy Ghost in all His fullness to Him, authorizing Him unto and acting His Divine power in all the acts and duties of His office, so as to evidence the presence of God unto Him and appropriation of Him. So in God's sealing of believers He owns them and gives them His Holy Spirit to fit them for their relations, to enable them unto their duties, to act their new principles, and every way to discharge the work they are called to do. He gives them the Spirit of power of love- and of a sound mind. And hereby does God seal them." John Owen.
SALVATION AND SEALING.
AITH in the promise and in the person of
Jesus Christ is that which secures salvation to us; the enduement of the Holy Spirit is that which gives us power in laboring for the salvation of others. The word on which we rest for the one blessing is, "Verily, verily, I say unto you he that believeth on me hath everlasting life;" the word on which we rest for the other blessing is, "Ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you." And we find in Scripture that there are two seals for attesting these two promises :
"He that hath received His testimony hath set to his seal that God is true." John 3: 33.
"After that ye believed ye were sealed with the Holy Spirit of Promise." Eph. 1: 13.
Very simple and beautiful is the way of faith as described in the first of these texts. To believe
is the first
what God says concerning his Son requirement for obeying the Gospel. believes what God has declared, and accepts what he has done for us through the redemption of his Son. And here is the sharp distinction between him that believeth and him that believeth not. God has borne witness to his Son that he is the Christ. "Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ?" asks John; but "Whoso. ever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God." says the same apostle. Such is the great gulf between faith and unbelief. declared that we have life in his
Again, God has
Son and in him
alone. "And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son." But says the Scripture once more, "He that believeth not God hath made him a liar, because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son;" while on the contrary, "he that receiv eth his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true."
Now we cannot emphasize the fact too strongly, that it is faith in the Son of God and faith only by which we are saved. Feeling may act very powerfully in connection with the Spirit's work in us, but it is faith alone that can appropriate Christ's work for us. And in no way can we so honor God as by taking his promise, "He that believeth on the Son hath life," and stamping it with the signet of our faith-"That is true." Not because we have proved it or felt it, but because God has said it, is our assurance. "Said I not unto thee that if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldst see the glory of God?" asks Jesus. Our order would have been, let me first see and then I will believe. But trust is never so simple and genuine as when it is blind, and has nothing to rest on but the bare word of God. Faith and reason are like the two compartments of an hour-glass; the one can only be full when the other is empty. That is to say, faith is at its best when it has nothing of proof or reason to rest upon, but grounds its assurance absolutely in the testimony of the Lord; and it is at its least when it believes only because of clear demonstration. Whatever of evidence or emotion therefore comes in as proof, de