by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts. —Zechariah 4:6
When we now see things in a despairing condition, let this vision come to our minds—that God is sufficiently able by his own power to help us, when there is no aid from any other; for his Spirit will be to us for lamps, for pourers, and for olive trees, so that experience will at length show that we have been preserved in a wonderful manner by his hand alone.
Thus we remember that all our confidence ought to be placed on the favor of God alone; for were it to depend on human aids, there would be nothing certain or sure. For God, as I have said, withdraws from us whatever may add courage according to the judgment of the flesh, in order that he may invite or rather draw us to himself.
vWhenever, then, earthly aids fail us, let us learn to recline on God alone, for it is not by a host or by might that God raises up his Church, and preserves it in its proper state; but this he does by his Spirit, that is, by his own intrinsic and wonderful power, which he does not blend with human aids; and his object is to draw us away from the world and to hold us wholly dependent on himself. —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.