“He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; being fully persuaded that what he had promised he was able also to perform.”—The word of God.
“Faith in thy power thou seest I have,
For thou this faith has wrought,
Dead souls thou call’st from the grave,
And speakest worlds from naught.
“In hope against all human hope,
Self desperate, I believe,
Thy quickening word shall raise me up,
Thou shalt thy Spirit give.
“The thing surpasses all my thought,
But faithful is my Lord:
Through unbelief i stagger not,
For God hath spoke the word.”
FROM the preceding views she discerned clearly, that one more step must be taken ere she could fully test the faithfulness of God. “Faithful is he who hath called you, who also will do it” was now no longer a matter of opinion but a truth confidently believed, and she saw that she must relinquish the confident expression before indulged in, as promising something in the future, “Thou wilt receive me,” for the yet more confident expression, implying present assurance. “Thou dost receive!” It is, perhaps, almost needless to say, that the enemy who had heretofore endeavored to withstand every step of the Spirit’s leadings, now confronted her, with much greater energy. The suggestion that it was strangely presumptuous to believe in such a way, was presented to her mind with a plausibility which only Satanic subtilty could invent. But the resolution to believe was fixed; and then the Spirit most inspiringly said to her heart,”The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.”
And now, realizing that she was engaged in a transaction eternal in its consequences, she here, in the strength, and as in the presence of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and those spirits that minister to the heirs of salvation, said, “O, Lord, I call heaven and earth to witness that I now lay my body, soul, and spirit, with all these redeemed powers, upon thine altar, to be for ever THINE! ‘TIS DONE! Thou hast promised to receive me! Thou canst not be unfaithful! Thou dost receive me now! From this time henceforth I am thine wholly thine!”
The enemy suggested, “‘Tis but the work of your own understanding—the effort of your own will.” But the Spirit of the Lord raised up a standard which Satan, with his combined forces, could not overthrow. It was by the following presentation of truth that the Spirit helped her infirmities: “Do not your perceptions of right—even your own understanding—assure you that it is matter of thanksgiving to God that you have been thus enabled to present your all to him?” “Yes,” responded her whole heart, “it has all been the work of the Spirit. I will praise him! Glory be to God in the highest!
Worthy is the Lamb to receive glory, honor, and blessing! Hallelujah! the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth! Yes, thou dost reign throughout the empire of my soul, the Lord God of every motion!” The SPIRIT now bore full tesitmony to her spirit, of the TRUTH of THE WORD! She felt in experimental verity that it was not in vain she had believed; her very existence seemed lost and swallowed up in God; she plunged, as it were, into an immeasurable ocean of love, light, and power and realized that she was encompassed with the “favor of the Almighty as with a shield: and felt assured while she continued thus, to rest her entire being on the faithfulness of God, she might confidently stand rejoicing in hope,” and exultingly sing with the poet—
“My steadfast soul from falling free
Shall now no longer rove,
But Christ be all in all to me,
And all my soul be LOVE
She now saw infinite propriety, comprehensiveness, and beauty, in those words of DIVINE origin, from which she had before shrunk as implying a state too high and sacred for ordinary attainment or expectation.
HOLINESS, SANCTIFICATION, perfect love, were words no longer so incomprehensible, or indefinite in nature or bearing, in relation to the individual experience of the Lord’s redeemed ones. She wondered not that it should be said in reference to the “WAY OF HOLINESS,” “The ransomed of the Lord shall walk there!” She perceived that these terms were most significantly expressive of a state of soul in which every believer should live, and felt that no words of mere earthly origin could imbody to her own perceptions, or convey to the understanding of others, half the comprehensiveness of meaning contained in them, and which stand forth so prominently in the word of God, thereby assuring men that they are given by the express dictation of the Holy Spirit.
She now thought of her former peculiar scruples in reference to the use of these words of divine origin, as in a degree partaking of the sin of Uzzah, implying, as she now clearly discerned, an unwarrantable carefulness about the ark of God; as though infinite wisdom had not devised the most proper mode of expression, for she well remembered how often her heart had risen against these expressions, as objectionable, when she had heard other travelers in the “way of holiness” use the terms as expressive of the state of grace into which the Lord had brought them; the very same words which she now saw were beautifully expressive of the state into which the Lord had brought her own soul.
But she now felt such a mighty increase of confidence in God, that she hesitated not to trust the entire management of his own cause in his own hands, and was willing ay, even desirous, to become an instrument through which he might show forth his power to save unto the uttermost—to be accounted of no reputation—to be but as a “voice” to sound forth the praise of the “Alimighty to save.” She was willing that the instrument should be depised and rejected, so that the voice of God should alone be heard, and the Saviour honored and accepted.