by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. —Hebrews 4:14–16
The vast importance of this we are taught by that solemn oath which "the Lord hath sworn, and will not repent; Thou art a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek." For there is no doubt that God intended to establish that capital point, which he knew to be the principal hinge on which our salvation turns. And as we have observed, there is no access to God, either for ourselves or our prayers, unless our Priest sanctify us by taking away our sins, and obtain for us that grace from which we are excluded by the pollution of our vices and crimes.
Thus we see it is necessary to begin with the death of Christ, in order to experience the efficacy and utility of his priesthood. Hence it follows that he is an eternal intercessor, and that it is by his intervention that we obtain favor with God. Hence proceeds not only confidence in prayer, but also tranquillity to the consciences of the faithful; while they recline in safety on the fatherly mercy of God, and are certainly persuaded that he is pleased with whatever is consecrated to him through the Mediator. —Institutes, II, xv, vi
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.