by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come. —Acts 2:20
We must first note that because men are too slow to receive Christ, they must be constrained by divers afflictions, as it were with whips. Secondly, forasmuch as Christ calls to himself all those who labor and are heavy laden, we must first be tamed by many miseries, that we may learn humility.
For through great prosperity men set up the horns of pride. And he cannot but despise Christ fiercely, whoever he be that seems to himself to be happy.
Thirdly, because we are, more than we ought, set upon seeing the peace of the flesh, whereby it comes to pass that many tie the grace of Christ to the present life, it is expedient for us to be accustomed to think otherwise, that we may know that the kingdom of Christ is spiritual.
Therefore, to the end that God may teach us that the good things of Christ are heavenly, he exercises us, according to the flesh, with many miseries; whereby it comes to pass that we seek our happiness outside the world. —Commentaries
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.