Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of Thy holy temple.” (Ps. 65.4)
Mr. Bunyan, in his Pilgrim’s Progress observes, ‘Christiana’s heart was so enamoured by the sight of Christ’s cross by faith, that she wished all her carnal friends to partake in what she saw and felt. But she was reminded that faith’s views are of special grace’. They are streams which flow from the river of God’s electing love. Every man whom the Lord chooses is ‘blessed with all spiritual blessings in Christ.’ This is evidenced by spiritual life. Seeing all grace, love, and happiness centre in Jehovah, he delights to draw near to Him, because confident of access by a new and living way consecrated through the flesh of the Lord Jesus Christ. Here is no fiery law, no flaming sword, to terrify and affright the believer in his approach to God: but the Lord Himself causes him to approach His presence. Love not only invites, but sweetly constrains him to come, as a child to its loving parents. The Father draws to the Son, and the Son reveals the Father by the Holy Spirit, as God of love to poor sinners. Without this, no soul can or will ever come to God. (Jn. 6.44). See your special mercy, adore that sovereign grace which reigns over all your pride and stubbornness. And do I thus approach my Lord? Oh what infinite treasures of grace are secured by covenant love and promise. Not a sudden fit of pleasure, or transient delight in the ways of God, do such experience; but they shall ‘dwell’; their residence shall be near the Lord in spirit, and they shall be satisfied from Jesus. All the glory and magnificence of the temple was only typical of Jesus, who exceeds in glory. All the glory and goodness of the Lord is treasured up in, and communicated from Him as man and Mediator to poor sinners. Come then as needy beggars to receive.
Oh the superabounding goodness of the Lord, to cause poor, head-strong, high-minded rebels to approach Him, and be satisfied with Him. Most joyful claim of faith, ‘The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him’ (Lam. 3.24). A glimpse of Christ’s glory and goodness sickens the soul to every other object. A lively faith engages the affections towards Him; love is very jealous, and excites watchfulness against what may disturb its happiness, or destroy its comfort. ‘I will sing unto the LORD, because he hath dealt bountifully with me’ (Ps. 13.6).
William Mason (1719-1791)