by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
Blessed are they that mourn
This ... marks off the Christian as being quite unlike the man who is not a Christian and who belongs to the world.... The one thing the world tries to shun is mourning; its whole organization is based on the supposition that that is something to avoid. The philosophy of the world is, Forget your troubles; turn your back on them, do everything you can not to face them. The whole organization of life, the pleasure mania, the
money, energy and enthusiasm that are expended in entertaining people, are all just an expression of the great aim of the world to get away from this idea of mourning and this spirit of mourning. But the gospel says, 'Happy are they that mourn." Indeed, they are the only ones who are happy! [see also Luke 6]....
This ... is something which is never found in the world ... this is something which is not as evident in the Church today as it once was and as it is in the New Testament. . . [an] idea has gained currency that if we as Christians are to attract those who are not Christians we must deliberately affect an appearance of brightness and joviality ... not something that rises from within, but something which is put on.... I cannot help feeling that the final explanation of the state of the Church today is a defective sense of sin and a defective doctrine of sin. Coupled with that, of course, is a failure to understand the true nature of Christian joy . . . [these things,] working together, of necessity produce a superficial kind of person and a very inadequate kind of Christian life.... It is not surprising that the Church is failing in her mission if her dual conception of sin and joy are thus defective and inadequate ... conviction must of necessity precede conversion, a real sense of sin must come before there can be a true joy of salvation. ... So many people spend all their lives in trying to find this Christian joy. They want joy apart from the conviction of sin. But that is impossible; it can never be obtained.
Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, i, pp. 53-6
“Text reproduced from ‘A First Book of Daily Readings’ by Martyn Lloyd-Jones, published by Epworth Press 1970 & 1977 © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. Used with permission.”
Comments on D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, A First Book of Daily Readings
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