"I have somewhat to say unto thee."

Luke 7:40-50.

H. C. Anstey.

Christian Friend vol. 16, 1889, p. 1.

We only get blessing from the word of God when we see how its words affect us. Can we not each write our own name in front of the above quotation? If so, we shall gather instruction from it. The Lord Jesus values and looks for our love. His heart is conscious of any and every deficit in the measure of the love which He receives from us. When the creditor had forgiven all to the two unequal debtors, He asks Simon, in this passage, "Which of them will love him most?" Now for the application of it to ourselves as He applied it to Simon.

"I entered into thine house." This He says to each of us. (See Titus 2:11.) In the most absolute grace He has come to us, unattracted by anything that existed in us. How has this wondrous visitor been received? To Simon He says, "Thou gavest me no kiss. Thou gavest me no water for My feet." No welcome, and no refreshment. Ah! is this true of one reader of these lines? No welcome and no refreshment for Jesus when He came. He expects and seeks both. Do you say, "I have welcomed Him, I have refreshed His blessed heart, because I am a Christian," as John 4:33 teaches? Well, there is still more than this to do. Again He says, "I have somewhat to say unto thee;" and again we do well to listen to His voice. "My head with oil thou didst not anoint." Is your service now all done in the power of the Spirit (the oil), and poured out upon CHRIST? There is no lack of service in these days; but oh, the importance of the addition of these two or three little words to what we do "as unto the Lord"! They completely alter the character of your work for Him. Can you say, It was little, but such as it was I poured it all out upon Him, and all in the power of the Spirit of God, and according to His leading and guidance? Did you? Is not this a testing question to each of us?

Observe in this passage this woman's devotion to the person of our Lord. How her love displayed itself - not so much in the amount of the work which she did, as in the fact that she did it all to Him! No secondary motives guided her. He - He alone - was her one only object. Oh, the beautiful independence of this love! It asked no advice, nor copied from what others were doing. It expended its little all upon Him. He noted it. He valued it. The welcome to Him - the kiss. The refreshment, the water for His feet. The ointment with which she anointed His feet, this comfort given to Him, and where does He now seek and expect to find these things? In our houses. "I entered into thine house." Has he found, and does He find them all there, my reader? Is it true of your house and of mine? Or, if we have not a house of our own, is there a corner where He gets from us individually that which He seeks?

But we are soon going into His house. What will be there our welcome, our refreshment, our comfort? Will He fail to greet us with every one of these? Well we know that not one will fail. How cold our hearts as to the welcome, the refreshment, the comfort which He gets from us now! How fully, in that blessed day that is coming (the "presentation day"), will His heart satisfy itself in the pouring out of His own love to us! We are going into the Father's house. (John 14:1-3.) What met the prodigal at his approach there? No questions, only the kiss. It was the first thing, and it was the kiss of love. (See Luke 15:20.) Then as to the delight of His own heart in that day to minister refreshment and comfort to us, what do we read? "Verily I say unto you, that He shall gird Himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them." (Luke 12:37.)

Spite of all our failure and want of love now, what a blessed day is thus drawing nigh. A day in which in joy peculiar to Him we shall be with Him, and He will be with us. The "presentation day" of Ephesians 5:27, when He shall bring the bride into the Father's house, and when His own heart shall delight itself in her. How different our reception and comfort there then, and His here now, who in grace condescends to say to each of us, "I entered into thine house!" Yet He never changes. (Hebrews 13:8.) The day comes when we shall fully know what love is, as it is displayed in Him toward us. Does the prospect gladden us? Do we love His appearing? (2 Tim. 4:8.) Then it will bring out from us in our houses a little more devotedness of heart now to Himself, whatever others may be doing.

May He guide us to this, keeping before us His interest in our love as forgiven ones, expressed in these words, "I have somewhat to say unto thee." May you and I condescend to listen; so shall we profit thereby. H. C. A.