— The Interior of Hidden Life (2nd edition, 1844). Part 1, Chapter 5.
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.
Monday, February 24, 2014
Faith is Better than Intellectual Illumination
Faith is better to us, far better, than mere intellectual illumination, better than any strength of joyous emotion; better than any thing and every thing else, except holy love, of which it is the true parent. The fallen angels, in their primitive state of holiness, had illuminations, great discoveries of God and of heavenly things, and great raptures. But when their faith failed, when they ceased to have perfect confidence in God, they fell into sin and ruin. Our first parents fell in the same way; because they ceased to have confidence in God; because they ceased to believe him to be what he professed to be, and that he would do what he declared he would do. Their previous glorious experiences, their illuminations and joys, availed nothing, as soon as unbelief entered. Unbelief in them, and unbelief in their descendants, has ever been the great, the destructive sin. And faith on the other hand, an implicit confidence in God, a perfect self-abandonment into his hands, ever has been, and from the nature of the case ever must be the fountain of all other internal good, the life of all other life in the soul.