Honest, Daily Abandon
Don’t try to convince God that you're other than you are. God will take you in by His grace, words, and all. He knows you through and through.
Alright. Thank you very much and hello again, my dear radio friend. How in the world are you? I ask that corny greeting establishes the fact that this is indeed your good friend, Bob Cook, and we’re back together again, you can I, by means of radio. How grateful I am for the stations that put us on day by day so that we can share the Word of God together. The miles drop away and here we are, you and I, looking at the Word of God. It’s a wonderful privilege, isn’t it? I’m so grateful.
We’re looking at II Peter Chapter 1 and that list of things that you and I must add to our life and personality by faith in the Lord Jesus. Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly love, Calvary love. And we’ve finished that list except for discussing this word of what your King James Version calls “charity.” It’s our word “love,” Calvary love. Agape is the Greek word. It’s John 3:16 kind of love, “God so loved the world.” The same thing. And we sort of ran down a little review of it the last time we got together. “God’s love is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.” God’s love motivates us. We serve other people by the love of God in our hearts. It spills over. It abounds from us.
And now we come to Ephesians 3:17. We just started on that the last time we got together; that Christ may feel at home in your hearts by faith. You open by faith every room in your heart house to your blessed Lord and the Holy Spirit of God fills that room with God’s love. And then it says, “Ye being rooted and grounded in love.” Now, root has to do with the life of a plant. Grounding has to do with the structure of a building. Now, there’s the difference, you see. And Paul mixes his metaphors here deliberately so that we can get an idea of how God’s love works in our hearts. “That ye being rooted,” the Greek word from which you get the English word in biology class “rhizome” is right there and grounded, settled, built on in love.
Now, who does this work? Well, our Lord Jesus said, “I’m the vine. Ye are the branches. He that abideth in me bringeth forth fruit.” John 15, you’re familiar with that passage. And the order of truth there is no fruit, some fruit, more fruit, much fruit, and He finally says, “Herein is my Father glorified that ye bear much fruit. He that abideth in me and I in Him the same bringeth forth much fruit for without me, ye can do nothing.” Now, that’s an absolute. There isn’t any degree of nothingness. He didn’t say “almost nothing.” He didn’t say “something.” He didn’t say anything other than this word “nothing.” You can’t do anything without the Lord Jesus Christ. That’s what He said. Rooted then has to do with your life. “I am the vine,” said He, “you’re the branches. You take a twig away from a vine and it dies.” And so He says, “Abide in me.” The flow of divine life through your whole being is what is involved in this matter of experiencing God’s love.
Now, I can’t tell you how that happens. I only can tell you that it does occur. Charles G. Finney in his autobiography tells of his experience when one wintery night after the evening services in church he went past his law office because he was still then a practicing attorney. He lit a fire in the hearth and then knelt down to seek God in prayer and he says, “I don’t know how long it was but I know that before I finished praying, God’s spirit met you and I felt as though I were experiencing wave after wave of liquid love just flooding my soul. Here was a man of glacial temperament. He was glacial. But this man, when he sought God, was simply overwhelmed with the love of God. He said when he finished praying the fire had long since gone out and the colds were dead and black and cold on the hearth there. But his heart was warm and tender with the love of God. That’s Charles E. Finney’s account of what happened when God met him in that way.
You let the Lord Jesus Christ fully into every room into your heart house and the love of God will be shed abroad by the Holy Spirit and you will experience the flow then of divine life. You see God’s love is not a matter of a pattern of conduct so much as it is a flow of divine life. You don’t try to manifest the love of God. Have you ever had experience with someone who was coping with you just trying to be nice to you? You can see through it right away, can you not? You can sense when someone is acting in a cordial or loving manner but doesn’t feel that way. Actually, you become a little ridiculous when you try to manifest love without the life, the flow, the living flow of God’s love in your heart. You just end up looking ridiculous. So don’t try it.
Our Lord Jesus said there’s no markup, there no future in hypocrisy. It’s like a batch of bread dough into which you put a little yeast and you wait around and soon the entire batch of bread dough is filled with the yeasts whereas a little hypocrisy, a little putting on, a little trying to act in a certain way soon makes your whole life a deception. So don’t try it that way. Instead linger in the presence of your blessed Lord and by faith open the areas, the non-loving, let us say, areas of your life to Him by faith and let Him fill them with His love then you’ll be rooted in love. What does that mean? The very life of God producing His love in your heart. Now, that underscores then the importance of your daily devotional time with the Lord.
Why should you spend time in the beginning of each day waiting on God? You know, the old familiar formula, ACTS, Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication. Why should you spend time day by day with your Lord in His Word and in prayer? Because that’s the only way you can nourish the root system of your soul rooted. In love means you feed on the very love of God in Christ. He said, “Abide in me. I’m the vine. You get your sustenance from me. You get your strength from me. You get your very life from me,” is what he was saying. And that includes then the love of God, rooted. Hence, being grounded has to do with the structure and your place in it. Grounded, that means you are set in a place for purpose. Have you thought about the fact that the significance of your life may very well depend upon the outflow of God’s love from you?
Now, we’ve all had experience with people who were capable but who really were not all that significant in their effect upon other people. You may have had a supervisor at some time or other who was quite efficient but who left you cold and unfulfilled in your ambitions and dissatisfied with your job and then that supervisor was transferred or quit or whatever and you got somebody else who was more outgoing and more compassionate and caring and immediately everything else seemed to improve, didn’t it? What I’m saying is your significance to other people may very well depend upon the outflow of the love of God from your life. You’re grounded in love. You’re settled in a given place for a given purpose and that purpose is the transmission of God’s message of redeeming love in Christ. Don’t move away from the foundation of love. You’re not called to be combative. You’re called to be redemptive and there is a difference. “You being rooted and grounded in love may be able,” said He, “to comprehend with all saints, what is the breadth and length and depth and height and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge.”
Now, Paul speaks about the peace of God which passes understanding. That comes through prayer. “In everything by prayer and everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God and the peace of God which passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts and mind through Christ Jesus.” Now, He speaks about the love of God which passes knowledge. The love of God which passes knowledge. You don’t study successfully to understand God’s love. You only understand God’s love when Jesus becomes at home in your heart when he becomes Lord of your life that Christ may dwell in your hearts, feel at home in your heart by faith, then he says you’ll know the love of God with passes human head knowledge. You don’t study these things. You experience them.
Now, let me come back again to the note that I struck a few moments ago. It is so important for you to have that daily contact with your Lord in prayer, in study of His Word, in devotion, and in commitment of yourself to Him. Don’t try to convince God that you’re other than you are. God will take you in by His grace, words, and all. He knows you through and through. Daily commit yourself to him. Daily by faith open every room in your heart house to the Lord Jesus Christ. Daily abandon yourself to God leaving up to Him the decisions that need to be made and the guidance that you need so much. And as a result, experience the flow and the vitality and the dynamic and the significance, the meaningfulness of God’s love working in your life. Oh, may God grant it by His grace for you and for me and for us all.
Dear Jesus, shed your love abroad in our hearts. I pray in that wonderful name. Amen.
Until I meet you once again by way of radio, Walk With The King today and be a blessing.
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