Posted by: Sherry Goodwin | March 6, 2008

Christ for Us

‘So will I also be for thee.’–Hos. 3:3

THE typical promise, ‘Thou shalt abide for Me many days,’ is indeed a marvel of love.  For it is given to the most undeserving, described under the strongest possible figure of utter worthlessness and treacherousness,–the woman beloved, yet an adulteress.
The depth of the abyss shows the length of the line that has fathomed it, yet only the length of the line reveals the real depth of the abyss.  The sin shows the love, and the love reveals the sin.  The Bible has few words more touching, though seldom quoted, than those just preceding this wonderful promise:  ‘The love of the Lord toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods, and love flagons of wine.’  Put that into the personal application which no doubt underlies it, and say, ‘The love of the Lord toward me, who have looked away from Him, with wandering, faithless eyes, to other helps and hopes, and have loved earthly joys and sought earthly gratifications,–the love of the Lord toward even me!’  And then hear Him saying in the next verse, ‘So I brought her to me;’ stooping to do that in His unspeakable condescension of love, not with the typical silver and barley, but with the precious blood of Christ.  Then, having thus loved us, and rescued us, and bought us with a price indeed, He says, still under the same figure, ‘Thou shalt abide for Me many days.’
This is both a command and a pledge.  But the very pledge implies our past unfaithfulness, and the proved need of even our own part being undertaken by the ever patient Lord.  He Himself has to guarantee our faithfulness, because there is no other hope of our continuing faithful.  Well may such love win our full and glad surrender, and such a promise win our happy and confident trust!
But He says more.  He says, ‘So will I also be for thee!’  And this seems an even greater marvel of love, as we observe how He meets every detail of our consecration with this wonderful word.

–Frances Ridley Havergal from KEPT FOR THE MASTER’S USE

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