by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy. —Leviticus 19:2
This Scripture plan consists chiefly in these two things—the first, that a love of righteousness, to which we have otherwise no natural inclination, be instilled and introduced into our hearts; the second, that a rule be prescribed to us, to prevent our taking any devious steps in the race of righteousness. Now in the recommendation of righteousness, it uses a great number of very excellent arguments.
With what better foundation can it begin than when it admonishes us that we ought to be holy because our God is holy? For when we were dispersed like scattered sheep, and lost in the labyrinth of the world, he gathered us together again, that he might associate us to himself. When we hear any mention of our union with God, we should remember that holiness must be the bond of it; not that we attain communion with him by the merit of holiness (since it is rather necessary for us, in the first place, to adhere to him in order that, being endued with his holiness, we may follow whither he calls), but because it is a peculiar property of his glory not to have any intercourse with iniquity and uncleanness.
Wherefore also it teaches, that this is the end of our vocation, which it is requisite for us always to keep in view, if we desire to correspond to the design of God in calling us. For to what purpose was it that we were delivered from the iniquity and pollution of the world, in which we had been immersed, if we permit ourselves to wallow in them as long as we live? —Institutes, III, vi, ii
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.