HH, Sir Godfrey Gregg D.Div
“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.” Matthew 10:34
Not peace, but a sword! Lord Jesus, this is a hard saying! Teach me to believe it, and to submit to the ordeal — sharp and keen and sore though it may be.
Between me and my world, Christ’s sword may pierce with its remorseless edge. He separates me . . .
- from old sinful habits,
- from old sinful employments,
- from old sinful pleasures,
- from old sinful friendships.
He divides me from the society to which I was accustomed to moving. “Your home is no longer there!” He says. And I go out from the familiar surroundings, into an untrodden region and realm.
Between me and my nearest and dearest — Christ’s sword may pierce pitilessly. Perhaps the loved ones of my own house will have nothing to do with my Redeemer and Lord. Perhaps they see no beauty in Him, that they should desire Him. Then, in the deepest and noblest things, they and I will stand apart — a sundering tide rolling between us. And how immeasurably sad that will be!
Between me and myself — Christ’s sword is sure to pierce with a blade that does not spare! The I, the self — that used to be so vain, so confident, so proud — must be slain outright! Its days of pride, pleasure and selfishness must end — until I can say, “It is no more I who live — but He — my Prophet, my Priest, my King — who lives in me!” What a change that is! What martyrdom!
It is painful, this stroke of Christ’s sword. But the old confessor was right: “The nearer the sword — the nearer Heaven!” If I am the victim — I am the victor too. Smitten down by Jesus — I am not destroyed, but crowned!