— from The Interior or Hidden Life (1844).
The life of those who dwell in the secret place of the Most High may be called a Hidden Life, because the animating principle, the vital or operative element, is not so much in itself as in another. It is a life grafted into another life. It is the life of the soul, incorporated into the life of Christ; and in such a way, that, while it has a distinct vitality, it has so very much in the sense, in which the branch of a tree may be said to have a distinct vitality from the root.
Friday, December 13, 2013
Holiness Does Not Imply Physical Perfection
The holiness, which Christ requires in his people, and which, in order to distinguish it from Adamic perfection, is sometimes designated as evangelical or gospel holiness, does not necessarily imply a perfection of the physical system. Adam, before his fall, was a perfect man physically as well as mentally. His senses were sound; his limbs symmetrical; his muscular powers uninjured; and in all merely corporeal or physical respects, we may reasonably suppose, that he possessed all that could be desired. But this is not our present condition. Far from it. In consequence of the fall of Adam, we inherit bodies that are subject to various weaknesses and infirmities. Many are called, in the Providence of God, to endure a great degree of suffering through the whole course of their days. These weaknesses and infirmities, which are often the source of great perplexity and suffering, are natural to us. To a considerable extent at least, we cannot prevent their coming; nor, when they have come, can we, by any mere voluntary acts, send them away. We admit, therefore, if gospel holiness necessarily implies physical perfection, that none can be holy. But this is not the case.