The Liberty Bell
Scripture Reading — Exodus 34:29-35
I sought the Lord, and he answered me . . . . Those who look to him are radiant. Psalm 34:4-5 —
After his congregation had finished singing beautifully and powerfully one of his favorite hymns, a preacher shouted: "Now, if that doesn't ring your bell, your clapper is broken!" Is your clapper broken? Does your bell not ring loud and clear with the things of God? If it doesn't, what might be the reason?
"Some affections do not last," writes Jonathan Edwards. "They disappear, leaving a void." When we love things of this world, we will tend to love those things for a while till we find them unsatisfying; then we'll move on to something else that seems more promising-and so on. Each of us has a deep capacity for satisfaction. But nothing in this world can fill that capacity. So we'll find ourselves flitting from one thing to another as the shimmer of hope held out by each worldly affection fades.
"But this is not so with true, gracious affections," states Edwards. "They leave a lingering perfume and a stronger inclination toward holy living before God. In his remarkable encounter with God, Moses' face did not only shine while he was on the mount, but it continued to shine afterwards as well. When people have been conversing with Christ in some remarkable way, an abiding impact is seen. Their demeanor is affected because they have been with Jesus."
Now that will keep our bell ringing!
"Create in me a pure heart, O God. . . . Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me." In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.