by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; —Psalm 46:2
"Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed." He concludes by way of inference that the faithful have no reason to be afraid, since God is always ready to deliver them, nay, is also armed with invincible power.
He shows in this that the true and proper proof of our hope consists in this, that, when things are so confused, that the heavens seem as it were to fall with great violence, the earth to remove out of its place, and the mountains to be torn up from their very foundations, we nevertheless continue to preserve and maintain calmness and tranquillity of heart.
It is an easy matter to manifest the appearance of great confidence, so long as we are not placed in imminent danger; but if, in the midst of a general crash of the whole world our minds continue undisturbed and free of trouble, this is an evident proof that we attribute to the power of God the honor which belongs to him.
When, however, the sacred poet says, "We will not fear," he is not to be understood as meaning that the minds of the godly are exempt from all solicitude or fear, as if they were destitute of feeling, for there is a great difference between insensibility and the confidence of faith. He only shows that whatever may happen they are never overwhelmed with terror, but rather gather strength and courage sufficient to allay all fear.
"Though the earth be moved and the mountains fall into the midst of the sea" are hyperbolical modes of expression, but they nevertheless denote a revolution, and turning upside down of the whole 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.