1 Peter 1:6-9
Wherein you greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, you are in heaviness through manifold temptations:…
To produce in us a love to Christ it is not necessary that we should see Him with our bodily eyes. Those who actually saw Jesus and loved Him are comparatively few to those who love Him unseen.
I. THE PROPERTIES OF THIS LOVE.
1. It is sincere and hearty. We must not judge by one single act in life, but by the habitual frame and the general tenor in behaviour. A real concern of mind for offending a friend is a sign that we esteem him.
2. It has respect unto Christ in all His characters and titles.
3. This love is superlative. It exceeds the esteem which the soul has for all other things. Christ will accept of nothing less.
4. This love is constant and everlasting. It is not like the esteem which we have for our fellow creatures, which frequently stops upon receiving an affront, and is often changed into resentment.
II. THE GROUNDS AND REASONS why the Christian loves an unseen Jesus.
1. The Christian loves an unseen Jesus because of the excellencies which He possesses, Whatever excellency is in the creature may be found in the highest perfection in Jesus Christ, for He inherits all true perfection: creatures' glories are all imperfect.
2. The Christian loves an unseen Saviour because of the relation which He stands in to him. The ties of nature and relation are strong inducements to affection; a mother must turn monster if she does not love her babe.
3. The Christian is under the greatest obligations to Jesus for the wonders of His free and unmerited love: no wonder, then, that he loves Him, though unseen.
III. THE REASONABLENESS of the Christian's love to an unseen Saviour.
1. Let us view the infinite glory of His person.
2. The amazing greatness of His condescension for His people's advantage.
3. The blessings which He has conferred upon the Christian,
4. The endearing titles He has given him.
5. The care He continually takes of him, and the glory He has prepared and will secure for him.
6. The freeness of this love.
Parallel VersesKJV: Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: