“Lovest thou Me?” (John 21:15).
The Lord Jesus addressed this question to Peter His disciples. A more important question could not be asked. Over nineteen hundred years have passed away since the words were spoken, but to this very day the inquiry is most searching and useful.
The true Christian is one who is so in his heart and life. It is what he feels himself and in his heart. It is seen by others in his conduct and life. He sees Jesus Christ as the Divine Savior whom his soul needs and commits himself to Him. Christ Himself is the cornerstone of his Christianity. Ask him in what he trusts for the forgiveness of his many sins, and he will tell you he trusts in the death of Christ. Ask him by what pattern he tries to frame his life, and he will tell you that it is the example of Christ.
But beside all this, there is one thing that is eminently peculiar in the true Christian. That thing is love to Christ. Knowledge, faith, hope, reverence, obedience, are all marked features in a true Christian’s character. However, the picture would be very imperfect if his “love” to His Divine Master was omitted. He not only knows trusts and obeys; he goes further than this—he loves.
Hear once more what our Lord Jesus Christ said to the apostle Peter after He rose from the dead. Three times He asked him the question, “Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou Me?” (John 21:1–17). The occasion was remarkable. He meant gently to remind his erring disciple of his thrice-repeated fall. He desired to call forth from him a new confession of faith before publicly restoring him and giving him His commission to feed His own. And what was the question that He asked him? He might have said “Believest thou? Art thou converted? Art thou ready to confess me? Wilt thou obey Me?” He uses none of these expressions. He simply says, “Lovest thou Me?” This is the point He would have us know, that point on which a man’s Christianity hinges. Simple as the question sounded, it was most searching. Plain and easy to be understood by the most unlearned, it tests the reality of an apostle. If a man truly loves Christ, all is right—if not, all is wrong.
I trust that you will enjoy the great articles in this issue during the summer months. It is our prayer that the Lord would use them for building you up in your most holy faith and help you to be established.
Thank you for your e-mails and notes of encouragement.
Please keep praying for the Lord’s blessing on Toward the Mark.
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Yours in our soon-coming Lord,
Emil S. Nashed
Please send your questions and comments to:
Toward The Mark
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Attention: Emil S. Nashed