How do I know Christ loves me?

By your being drawn to Christ: ‘I have loved thee with an everlasting love, therefore with loving-kindness have I drawn thee.’ Have you seen something attractive in Jesus? The world are attracted by beauty, or dress, or glittering jewels – have you been attracted to Christ by his good ointments? This is the mark of all who are graven on Christ’s heart – they come to him; they see Jesus to be precious. The easy world see no preciousness in Christ; they prize a lust higher, the smile of the world higher, money higher, pleasure higher; but those whom Christ loves he draws after him by the sight of his preciousness. Have you thus followed him, prized him – as a drowning sinner cleaved to him? Then he will in no wise cast you out – in no wise, not for all you have done against him. ‘But I spent my best days in sin’ – Still I will in no wise cast you out. ‘I lived in open sin’ – I will in no wise cast you out. ‘But I have sinned against light and conviction’ – Still, I will in no wise cast you out. ‘But I am a backslider’ – Still the arms of his love are open to infold your poor guilty soul, and he will not cast you out.

~ Robert Murray M’Cheyne

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5 Responses to “How do I know Christ loves me?”

  1. Chris Says:

    So if I am not drawn then He does not love me?

  2. luehrmann Says:

    Chris, I suppose you’d have to ask M’Cheyne:) In my thinking, the better question would be “Does Christ love everybody the same?” Here is a quote from Iain Murray’s booklet ‘The Cross: The Pulpit of God’s Love,’ that I’ve found helpful. I have an extra copy of the booklet if you want it. “But if Christians are no more loved than those who will finally be lost, the decisive factor in salvation becomes, not God’s grace and love, but something in them, and their perseverance becomes dependant upon themselves. To widen the atonement (Christ’s death on the cross), and to speak of it only in terms of general love, is to take away is saving power. The believer in Christ needs to know that the love which embraces him is eternal, almighty, and immutable. It does not hang upon his faith for it went before faith.”

  3. Chris Says:

    Thanks for the response.

    Thanks also for the offer of the booklet but I’ve read some Iain Murray before and I’m pretty familiar with the standard Calvinist position on limited atonement / particular redemption and the way in which Calvinists attempt to defend it.

    I may be a simple soul but verses like 1 John 2:2, 1 John 4:14, John 3:16, 2 Peter 3:9, 1 Timothy 2:4 and lots of others on a plain reading of the text do not limit the atonement. I know that calvinists explain away these texts (world doesn’t really mean world, all doesn’t really mean all etc) but I don’t find those explanations satisfying or consistent with scripture.

    I also don’t understand how believing in an unlimited atonement / general redemption removes the saving power of the cross. God’s grace and love are essential to salvation. In saving me God has done something that I could never do for myself, He has totally redeemed me. He takes my sin and gives me his righteousness. I have done nothing to deserve salvation and and nothing to earn it. He has drawn me, but I have turned in repentance and put faith in Him…..and faith is not a work as Romans explains in detail. It is faith, trust, ongoing reliance on Him. In Him I am secure, in Him I am elect, in Him I have been chosen from before the foundation of the world, in Him I have life. It is all IN HIM …. so I wish to abide in Him. (The positional truths even of election I think are underappreciated – He is the elect….in Him so am I) It isn’t my work but his grace his righteousness and his work in me that I am trusting.

    You will be telling me that people get born again (regenerated) before they believe the gospel next 😉

    Sorry to maybe seem “cheeky” but I really struggle with calvinism and in Scotland it seems that the assumption is that if you are an evangelical then by definition you are reformed and the broad anabaptist / arminian tradition is viewed as aberrant and even heretical.

    I hope that makes sense – please don’t take it as too critical – I really enjoy reading this blog and appreciate your work on it (I’ve also found your sermons on Genesis very helpful, especially the way in which you have put Eden and the fall in such a clear context – and and given creation such a clear purpose)

    Chris

  4. luehrmann Says:

    Chris,
    Thanks for your feedback. It’s great to know I have at least one regular reader (aside from my wife and parents). As we both know lots of ink has been spilled over this issue and I’m not sure I have anything new to bring to the table. Maybe we could have lunch sometime with some robust discussion? I think people often take it personally when others disagree. Anyhow, Fridays are probably best for me. I don’t mind disagreeing with folks on doctrines where both sides fall within orthodoxy and it is helpful and sharpening for us both to have these chats time to time. It is interesting to hear your experience here in Scotland (by the way, I don’t view it as heretical!:). Maybe it is the evangelical circles I’ve been exposed to over here, but I have often found myself in the minority. I’m glad you’ve found the Genesis study helpful. It has been a joy to study and personally very helpful as well.
    michael

  5. Chris Says:

    Hi there

    the next few Fridays are not good for me – I’m in and out of work using up leave and nipping down south the visit family. It would be good to meet up but I think it will have to be at the end of September.

    Chris

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