Christ Preparing our Hearts 31

Be persuaded that your soul is far more valuable to you than the whole world and there are only two places (heaven and hell) that you will spend all eternity in.

Do I see in Jesus Christ, a beauty and excellency; a fullness and all sufficiency? Is He the chiefest of ten thousands, altogether lovely in your eye? Can I say, oh, thousands of gold pieces (if I had it) for an interest in Christ’s blood? None but Christ. All is dung that I may win Him.

The soul is weighed down with earthly possessions, desires, and concerns. It is necessary to have some worldly concerns, but they are to be in their place and that as simply means by which we may seek the Lord. But the things of the world consume the worldly and are not to consume those who see themselves as but pilgrims in this world with their real home in heaven. Christ must prepare the heart of His people so that they will see that there are only two places to spend eternity in and that only those who truly have Christ as their chief love will spend eternity in heaven. Only those who see the true value of eternity (to some degree) will see Christ as supremely valuable.

The soul cannot just turn a switch or make a choice and see and delight in Christ as everything to it. The soul does not have a will that has the power or ability to see Christ in His glory, but instead the soul must be taught these things in the inward man. It is a verity that man must see Christ as beautiful and as excellent beyond compare, but until a man’s heart has been broken from love for self and his pride he will be blinded by those things and not see Christ. But even if Christ works and breaks men from self, the sight of Himself does not come automatically to the soul. The soul must be illumined with light and Christ must reveal Himself to men. Christ works in the soul to prepare the soul for a sight of Himself and His presence by humbling it and breaking it from self and the world. Until the beauty of the world vanishes, Christ cannot be seen as beautiful. Until the excellencies of the world dim, the glories of Christ the Light will not be seen or appreciated.

It should be obvious to all who have even a glimmer of light that as long as the heart is a worldly heart it will not entertain and value spiritual realities. The soul that is full of the world and yet a rational soul may indeed love the thought of heaven merely out of self-love and the fear of the wrath of God, yet self-love is what the work of Christ alone can break the soul of. The soul that is full of self-love can still have many religious ideas and values that it picks up from the Bible and attending church, but it will never love those things above all until Christ breaks the soul from its own self-love and pride. Human beings are born dead in sins and trespasses and as such are controlled and filled with a supreme self-love and pride. The Great Command to love God with all of their being is something that is utterly impossible for the fallen creature that is controlled and dominated by self-love. Until Christ breaks that heart of self-love, the soul has no ability to love God since it loves self with all of its being.

The soul is capable of great acts of religion and great acts of devotion while using the name of God, but the self is what it is really serving until Christ breaks it from self-love. The soul that is spiritually dead and full of self-love and pride may even think that it is serving God while doing acts of self-denial, but it is really denying an external form of self by the love of self. The soul can also think that it loves God but what it is really doing is loving a false god that it thinks loves it, so in reality the soul is just loving those who love it. Christ can be lovely to the eye of the person in the grips and domination of self-love, but it is a false Christ and only loves Christ in that it thinks that Christ loves him or her. It is even possible for a person to rationally choose Christ over a thousand pieces of gold, but that does not mean that the heart is truly broken by Christ. One can choose Christ in one sense thinking that Christ is best for the soul and it is better to spend eternity in heaven than hell, but that heart has not changed a bit and is still in the grips of self-love.

The real issue is whether a person’s heart, even after being saved, desires Christ more than gold. Is Christ and His glory what attracts the soul and its true desires? Oh this must come from Christ and nothing else. Only He can break the pride of the heart and work in the heart a supreme desire for Himself. It is when from the depths of the soul that the desires for Christ are so strong and He is so lovely that the whole world is viewed as dung that a person can know that s/he has a changed heart and a new heart. Christ in the soul gives the soul a love for Himself and the things of the world grow dim and then become dung. He must prepare the heart or it will not be prepared.

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