Saturday, December 27, 2014

The Great Philanthropist!

When our Lord dwelt among men, so extreme was His poverty  that He had nothing which He could call His own! If we follow Him through the whole of His memorable career, we shall find that He had to borrow whatever He needed.
Did He ride in solemn state, amid the acclamations of the people, to the Jewish capital? The humble beast on which He was mounted was not His own  but belonged to another.
Did He join with His little flock in celebrating the Pascal supper on the night before He died? The upper room in which they assembled, was a borrowed room.
Was there a garden to which He was in the habit of resorting in order to enjoy secret communion with His Heavenly Father? That garden, fraught with such hallowed associations, was a borrowed garden.
Did He cross from coast to coast for the purpose of performing His deeds of mercy, and of announcing the joyful tidings of pardon and peace to the ignorant and guilty? The fishing-boats which conveyed Him on these compassionate errands were borrowed boats.
Yes, if we go back to the time of His birth, the place in which He was born was a borrowed place; and, while He was born in another man's stable.  He was also buried in another man's grave. Although all things were made by Him, yet His circumstances were so destitute, that He was dependent for everything upon the charity of others.
To so poor and humiliating a lot, was the Lord of life and glory subjected.
And WHY did He assume such a debased condition? It was "for our sakes." In His deep poverty, as well as the other numberless woes to which He voluntarily submitted, His unselfish compassion was signally displayed, therein the kindness and love, the yearning pity and matchless philanthropy, of God our Savior appeared.
All that He did and suffered was for us!
He was made a curse  for us!
He gave Himself to die for us!
He obtained eternal redemption for us!
And although his privations and distresses have been long since exchanged for the realms and royalties above,  yet the spirit by which he is actuated is still the same.
The contemplation of the Redeemer's unselfish humiliation, ought to shame us out of that selfish spirit to which we are so prone. SELF has been truly called the great antichrist; not merely that which was to be manifested in the latter days  but which has characterized every age of the world's, and in no small measure, of the church's history.
After another mind, O my soul, even that which was in your blessed Lord, be it yours constantly and strenuously to aspire! Since He died for you, should you not be anxious to live for Him? It is surely your reasonable service to endeavor to promote in every way His cause below, inasmuch as He is ever pleading your cause above.
[John MacDuff]
2 Corinthians 8:9 ... For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
Luke 9:58 ... And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.
Hebrews 9:24 ... For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:
Philippians 2:21 ... For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ's.
Romans 5:8 ... But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.