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.

Saturday, February 3, 2024

The Love of God as Example

It is obvious, that love can never exist in any higher degree than in the Divine Mind; but it is certain that it never exists there in such a degree as to perplex, even to the smallest extent, the action of God’s percipient or intellectual nature. God loves deeply and perfectly, for the very reason that he perceives clearly and perfectly. To love an object, without a clear perception of the nature of the object and of its claims to love, would involve the hazard of loving imperfectly or wrongly; a risk which can never, by any possibility, exist on the part of a perfect and holy being. Now it must be obvious, that love, in those who bear the divine image, will sustain the same relation to other acts and affections of the mind, as it does in God. To be born in the divine image always implies this, and implies it in the real and strict sense. If we love like God, our love will operate by the same law, which regulates God’s love; that is to say, we shall love both in such a manner and such degree as to leave the intellect unembarrassed and clear in the perception and estimate of the character of the object and of its claims to our love. When, therefore, in the exercise of our benevolent affections, the actual affection exists in such a degree as to perplex the perceptive and intellectual action, and to render our appreciation of the merits or demerits of the object confused and doubtful, we may be certain that we are wrong, that we are jostled out of the true centre, and that we have not God with us.

 — from The Life of Faith, Part 2, Chapter 7.

No comments:

Post a Comment