Monday, December 22, 2008

The Guardian

Calvin asks, in his Commentary on Colossians, "How comes it that we are 'carried about with so many strange doctrines' (Hebrews 13:9)?" And he answers, "Because the excellence of Christ is not perceived by us". In other words, the great guardian of Biblical orthodoxy throughout the centuries is a passion for the glory and the excellency of God in Christ. Where the center shifts from God, everything begins to shift everywhere. Which does not bode well for doctrinal faithfulness in our own non-God-centered day.
Piper, The Legacy of Sovereign Joy, P121.

The weight, the depth, the loveliness of the glory of Christ, is what drove Calvin forward. A man who desired a quiet life in the study in Strasbourg, but instead was thrown into the middle of, essentially, a war zone, and kept going. A man who knew Christ from the scriptures, was fed by Christ by the scriptures, who loved to feed his people by the scriptures. it's hard not to be inspired by a man who would preach every day on alternate weeks, and in the course of an average month would preach twenty times and lecture twelve times, and that's even before you mention his commentaries on every New Testament book except Revelation, and nine Old Testament books. 

It was his focus on the glory of Christ, as revealed in the Word that sustained Him, that drove Him. It is this weight, this glory, this determination not to waste our lives that we need to see from scripture. A passion for Christ  is the guardian of the church though the ages, and in every age the centrality of the Bible must be fought for. That is where we meet with Christ, this is where we are fed, this is where lives and ministries stand or fall. Oh, let us be men and women of that book!

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