1 Peter 1:8
Whom having not seen, you love; in whom, though now you see him not, yet believing, you rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
Here is -
I. LOVE FOR THE UNSEEN.
1. This appears difficult. Many say," If we could only hear, see, touch Christ, we could love him; but it is now beyond our power." Nevertheless, this is:
2. Very common. What is all love for the absent but love for the unseen?
3. This is possible to all the highest forms of love. We have historic heroes whom we love (such as Melancthon, Howard, Henry Martyn, Frederick Robertson) with a much higher form of love than the self-seeking thing that often goes by that name among men.
4. This is a most blessed reality when, as with Christ, there can be communications with the Beloved, even though he be unseen. The unseen stands calm amid all our rush of life, changeless amidst all our transition and decay. To love him in his bodily presence must ever be to have a love that is limited, partial, accidental, temporary. Not so if we love "Christ in us the Hope of glory."
II. TRUST IN THE BELOVED. It is certain there must be some faith before there is any love, but it is equally certain that where there is much love there will be increasing faith. Love is the basis of a new and stronger faith. The vision of the soul rises from its affections. The anchor of faith has the firmest hold on the shores of love; the roots of faith draw their richest nutriment from the soil of love. Love Christ more, and you will believe him more.
III. JOY IN THE BELIEVED AND THE BELOVED. The joy that Paul as well as Peter knew, and that multitudes have possessed as they trusted in Christ and cleaved to Christ with their affections, is
(1) the joy of rest;
(2) the joy of intercourse. And it is:
1. A joy that is "unspeakable." Even song cannot utter it.
2. A joy noble now, and destined to perpetual nobleness. "Full of glory." There is no mean, or base, or decaying element in it. The casket, the human heart, is indestructible; and the jewel, this Christly joy, is imperishable. - U.R.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: