My beloved. - Song of Songs 2:8
This was a golden name that the ancient church in her most joyous moments ascribed to the Anointed of the Lord. When the time of the singing of birds was come, and the voice of the turtledove was heard in her land, the church's love-note was sweeter than either, as she sang, "My beloved is mine, and I am his; he grazes among the lilies." Ever in her song of songs she calls Him by that delightful name, "my beloved." Even in the long winter, when idolatry had withered the garden of the Lord, her prophets found space to lay aside the burden of the Lord for a little season and to say, "Let me sing for my beloved my love song concerning his vineyard."
Though the saints had never seen His face, though as yet He was not made flesh, nor had dwelt among us, nor had man beheld His glory, yet He was the consolation of Israel, the hope and joy of all the chosen, the "beloved" of all those who were upright before the Most High. We, in the summer days of the church, are also able to speak of Christ as the best beloved of our soul and to feel that He is very precious, the "distinguished among ten thousand, and altogether desirable."
Since the church loves Jesus and claims Him as her beloved, the apostle dares to defy the whole universe to separate her from the love of Christ and declares that neither tribulation, distress, persecution, famine, nakedness, danger, or the sword have been able to do it; nay, he joyously boasts, "In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us."1
My sole possession is Thy love;
In earth beneath, or heaven above,
I have no other store;
And though with fervent heart I pray,
And plead with Thee day after day,
I ask for nothing more.
1) Romans 8:37
Family Bible reading plan
verse 1 Exodus 31
verse 2 John 10
The Christian in Complete Armour, Volume 1
Arguably the most significant spiritual and biblical theology ever penned from the English Puritan era, the presentation of William Gurnall's (1616-1679) The Christian in Complete Armour in an accessible, single volume is certainly a landmark, and much welcomed, event. According to the Apostle Paul, the world is at war. Not a "hot war" but a war in the realm of the spirit. This war, Paul warns, requires special armament, and he explains that armament in Ephesians 6. Anglican cleric Gurnall began to explore Paul's exhortation in sermons and lectures, which he published under the title The Christian in Complete Armor. A perennial best-seller in Gurnall's own lifetime, these teachings became his legacy, influencing well over three centuries of Christians and eliciting praise from the likes of Richard Baxter, John Flavel, John Newton, Charles Spurgeon, Jonathan Edwards and have been abridged and modernized using more easily understood language.
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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.