God Yearns After You with Jealous Envy

Just something that I knew I just had to repost. The intensity of God’s love for us overshadows our darkest sins.

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[Via Justin Taylor]

James 4:5 in the ESV says “[God] yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us.” B. B. Warfield preferred the marginal reading of the Revised Version: “That Spirit which He made to dwell in us yearneth for us even unto jealous envy.” Both translations have God yearning jealously over his people.

Warfield preached a sermon on this passage entitled “The Love of the Holy Ghost” (HT: Fred Zaspel).

Here is a moving section from that sermon:

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See us steeped in the sin of the world; loving evil for evil’s sake, hating God and all that God stands for, ever seeking to drain deeper and deeper the cup of our sinful indulgence.

The Spirit follows us unwaveringly through all.

He is not driven away because we are sinners. He comes to us because, being sinners, we need Him.

He is not cast off because we reject His loving offices. He abides with us because our rejection of Him would leave us helpless.

He does not condition His further help upon our recognizing and returning His love. His continuance with us is conditioned only on His own love for us. And that love for us is so strong, so mighty, and so constant that it can never fail.

When He sees us immersed in sin and rushing headlong to destruction, He does not turn from us, He yearns for us with jealous envy.

It is in the hands of such love that we have fallen.

And it is because we have fallen into the hands of such love that we have before us a future of eternal hope.

When we lose hope in ourselves, when the present becomes dark and the future black before us, when effort after effort has issued only in disheartening failure, and our sin looms big before our despairing eyes; when our hearts hate and despise themselves, and we remember that God is greater than our hearts and cannot abide the least iniquity; the Spirit whom He has sent to bring us to Him still labors with us, not in indifference or hatred, but in pitying love.

Yea, His love burns all the stronger because we so deeply need His help: He is yearning after us with jealous envy.

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