by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; —I Timothy 6: 14, 15
Unbelievers take us for fools and witless idiots; and Saint Peter says that this must be fulfilled in us. As Isaiah complained of it in his time, the Christians must endure the like at this day.
And in the meantime we see that we are afraid of very little things; if a mouse but run before our eyes, we are all amazed. And again, we are tied fast by the legs in this world, for when we see the pomp of earthly princes, when we see the boasting of the world, we are by and by possessed with a false judgment; we know no more what the kingdom of God means; we quite forget that.
And what is the cause of it? That we do not listen to what Saint Paul says here. For we might easily defy all these earthly principalities when they lift up themselves against God, if we were well persuaded that God is supreme Prince, King of Kings and Lord of Lords. If this were well imprinted on our minds, all the pelting trifles of this world would be nothing to astonish us.
That is what I call whatever men are able to bring to make war against God. Though they are able to do much, and can if they wish be jolly fellows; yet because they match themselves against God's majesty, whatsoever they are able to attempt is nothing but smoke.
And therefore let us mark well what Paul says, namely that to be well confirmed in the fear of God, not to have our eyes dazzled with the vanities of the world, nor carried away with the allurements of Satan, nor to be overcome with any temptation, nor to be made afraid with any earthly pomp and loftiness we must give this sovereign empire to God, so that all knees bow down to him and do him homage. —Sermons
John Calvin was the premier theologian of the Reformation, but also a pious and godly Christian pastor who endeavored throughout his life to point men and women to Christ. We are grateful to Reformation Heritage Books for permission to use John Calvin's Thine Is My Heart as our daily devotional for 2013 on the OPC Web site. You can currently obtain a printed copy of that book from Reformation Heritage Books.
Dr. Joel Beeke, who is editorial director of Reformation Heritage Books, has this to say:
"Calvin shows us the piety of a Reformed theologian who speaks from the heart. Having tasted the goodness and grace of God in Jesus Christ, he pursued piety by seeking to know and do God’s will every day. He communed with Christ, practicing repentance, self-denial, and cross-bearing. Moreover, his theology worked itself out in heart-felt, Christ-honoring piety. The selections of this devotional bear this out, and hopefully will be used by God to direct pious hearts in our own day."
These devotional readings from John Calvin were compiled by John H. Kromminga. Be sure to read his "Introduction" to John Calvin's Thine Is My Heart.