“Clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart.” 2 Corinthians 3:3
The image is beautiful and instructing. The epistle of Christ, written not in a stony heart — but in a heart of flesh — a heart softened by grace. The heart is the seat of vital religion (Jeremiah 31:33).
The word is not effectual without the operation of the Spirit of God. By the Spirit, Christians are cast into the gospel mold. Thereby they become evangelical, spiritual, and heavenly. Their resemblance to Christ is gradually increased. They have the witness in themselves, have the comfortable experience that they are Christ’s, when they can trace His image on their hearts. They are declared to others to be epistles of Christ by their good conversation and conduct in the world, showing forth the truth, reality, and power of religion in times of affliction, and often at a dying hour. “Holiness to the Lord” is impressed in clear and durable characters. They also resemble one another in mutual love, and in love to all that bear the image of their Master.
Am I the epistle of Christ? Do I read the epistles of Christ in my Bible, and find them written on my heart? Do I see the finger of God in this Divine book, and feel His Spirit renewing my soul? Do I read the mind of God there and heartily approve of His mind? What shall I render to Him for so great a privilege? O that all who see me may recognize the handwriting of Jesus in me!
Devotion by Karl Heinrich von Bogatzky (1690—1774)
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