“Thou art all fair, my love;
there is no spot in thee”
Song of Songs 4:7
The pulse and passion of faith press the heart toward the “mark”, as Paul calls it, that we might overcome the natural inclinations of compromise. Weariness is a precursor to compromise. A fading faith gives way to “lukewarm” aspirations. The words remain but the fire burns low; grace as a power gives way to grace as a sentiment.
“No spot in thee”
The Hebrew word translated “spot” may be better understood as blemishes or stains. They are character flaws: anger, jealousy, envy, and the thousand other things that we as humans know only too well. The Call and the purpose of the New Covenant are that by God’s power, these traits of the carnal man would be swallowed up in His Life.
It is to the Bride that these marvelous words are spoken: to those who have “staggered not” (Romans 4:20) at the promises of God. The scriptures declare the bride “hath made herself ready” (Revelation 19:7). There is something within that carries her past her own sorrows, discouragement, and loneliness and binds her to the hope of His Calling. There is a fight of faith and diligence required to finish this short earthly existence with the assurance of a life lived pleasing to Him.
“Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless”
2 Peter 4:3
Diligence is the fruit of a faith that has been captured by the irresistible Life of Christ within. It is foreign to the natural man. It is the witness of the Almighty God calling fallen Adam unto Himself. To the natural man, it is foolishness; to those who know the words of the covenant but have not touched the influence of this wonder, it is considered misguided zeal.
This is His Word, not some unachievable ideal but His call to us. It is clearly stated and cannot be misinterpreted. It can, in the hands of the unbelieving believer, be explained away as an accomplished fact with nothing required of us beyond our mental assent! If this were true why are we exhorted to “be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot…”?
How many have wasted years resting in words while ignoring the “still small voice” within, resisting the press of His Spirit unto obedience and the workings of the Cross? True diligence born of His Spirit will look for every opportunity in life to learn of Him who alone can purify the human heart. It is in facing our doubts, failures, and the inevitable loneliness that comes to those who stay true to the call within, that we will experience His overcoming life.
The greater the vision of His Call within us the more we see the dichotomy of all HE is compared to all we are. There is an unfathomable chasm that saps the strength of the natural man. It is somewhat understandable that many turn from this holy pursuit, except for ONE thing:
“But God, who is rich in mercy…”
Mercy, like grace. is not a sentiment. It is the power of God enabling His own to offer themselves unto Him.
“I appeal to you, therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God…”
Mercy is how the hearts of men and women are captured to live daily in the offering of themselves. It is a grace that sees us through our own deep failures, that awakens us out of our deadly slumber, and keeps our feet moving even through the deep valleys of separation and discouragement!
and truly received,
Carries men and women
in Love’s firm hold,
To make them humble
and ever so bold.
Related Quote: John G. Lake
“In helping others we benefit ourselves,
we heal our own wounds in binding up those of others”