What is there always for me in Christ?

Answer: The affections of His heart, and the power of His arm.

John 11.

H. C. Anstey.

Christian Friend vol. 19, 1892, p. 294.

These are both in Him, for me and for every Christian. These never alter, they are always there.

1st. I have the affections of His heart for me.

2nd. I have the power of His arm on my behalf.

He is increasingly displaying to me the affections of His heart. Had we the eyes to see, the ears to hear, the heart to understand, the thousand proofs of the affections that change not, fresh themes for joy and praise would appear in our daily path. The love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, is not an inactive principle. Oh, no! Love must act towards its object, and it does. What we require is the anointed eye to see it.

We should never in our meditations separate these two thoughts, the thought of "the affections of His heart" from that of "the power of His arm." We may not see the power of His arm displayed on our behalf in this or in that difficulty, but we know it is there. We may be totally unable to trace "the affections of His heart" in this or in that dealing of His hand, but, none the less, the affection exists there in all its magnificent grandeur. I am called on earth to delight myself day by day in both; in the unchanging "affections of His heart," and in the untiring "power of His arm." Such is the Christian calling. How great, how complete

But we may think of the one apart from the other; and so Satan may be busily trying to make us miserable by leading us to question the affections of His heart, because we do not understand these dealings of His hand. Alas, such hearts have we, and so easily affected for evil, that this is no difficult task to him.

Thus we find it in John 11. The onlooker (yet himself blind) might say, "Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?" "He has the power, where is His affection?" It is one who does not know Him who reasons thus. but in this hour of trial are not His own also very low in their estimate of Him? His love, His power, where were they? "Lord, if Thou hadst been here, my brother had not died." As if to say, "Lord, you did not interfere, nor come to us while he lived; your power and love might have stayed the work of death, and now by this time he stinketh." But all this is unbelief, and as such He rebukes it. "Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe thou shouldest see the glory of God? "

His love was unchanged! "Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus," "Behold, how He loved him!" Nothing could change that. And His power was the same too, though "He abode two days still in the same place where He was." Oh for the faith which, rising above these seen and passing changes of this world, can calmly rest itself above the horizon of unbelief!

JESUS is THE SAME! Come what may, His love to me is the same, His power for me is as great as the love which (at present) sees that it is better to wait than to display itself.

But He displays both when He comes; and if He waits to do this, then surely I can wait. "Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed"; this is what comes out in John. I am in faith now with Him. "Part with me" is the portion of the believer now. All is our true and assured present portion, i.e. "His love" and "His power"; but they are only true to "faith." "Ye believe in God," He said, "believe also in me." He would have us quietly enjoying our portion. "Lazarus, come forth!" proved His power as it proved WHO He was. Again, "Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with Him." (12:2.) This proved His love, which must have its object near itself. It is "Jesus the Son of God" who is before us here. Faith knows Him, and in Him it rests. We have a great High Priest that is passed through the heavens, "Jesus the Son of God." And the dealings of His hand are all "for the glory of God, that the Son of GOD might be glorified thereby." Faith cannot separate the "affections of His heart" from "the power of His arm," but He is all for us, and He who is so, is "Jesus the Son of God."

May the Lord teach us more about these things, and lead us into them through our subjection to the Spirit in us. H. C. A.