Humility, Happiness, Holiness
The Lord Jesus gives special revelations of Himself to His people. Even if Scripture did not declare this, many of the children of God could testify to the truth of it from their own experience. They have had manifestations of their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, in a peculiar manner, such as no mere reading or hearing could afford.
In the biographies of eminent saints, you will find many instances recorded in which Jesus has been pleased in a very special manner to speak to their souls and to unfold the wonders of His person; in this way their souls have been steeped in happiness, and they have thought themselves to be in heaven. Although they were not there, they were close to the threshold of it--for when Jesus manifests Himself to His people, it is heaven on earth; it is paradise in embryo; it is bliss begun.
Special manifestations of Christ exercise a holy influence on the believer's heart. One effect will be humility. If a man says, "I have had such-and-such spiritual communications, I am a great man," he has never had any communion with Jesus at all; for "the LORD regards the lowly, but the haughty he knows from afar."1 He does not need to come near the haughty to know them and will never give them any visits of love. Another effect will be happiness; for in God's presence there are pleasures forevermore. Holiness will be sure to follow. A man who has no holiness has never had this manifestation. Some men profess a great deal; but we must not believe anyone unless we see that his actions agree with what he says. "Do not be deceived: God is not mocked."2 He will not bestow His favors upon the wicked, for He will neither cast away a perfect man, nor will He respect an evildoer. Thus there will be three effects of nearness to Jesus--humility, happiness, and holiness. May God give them to you, Christian!
1 Psalm 138:6
2 Galations 6:7
verse 1 Numbers 21
verse 2 Psalms 60, 61
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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.