Sermon #1870[i] — Miscellaneous Sermons
Title: “My Beloved Is Mine
And I Am His”
Text: Song of Solomon 2:16-17
Subject: The Joy of Assurance
Someone said, “This is the happiest verse in the Bible.” I think might have to agree — “My Beloved is mine and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies.” — Those words reflect a heart full of peace, assurance, contentment, and joy. But the very next verse casts a shadow over the scene. There is a cloud in the sky. — “Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my Beloved, and be thou like a roe, or a young hart upon the mountains of Bether.”
Our text seems to reflect a state of mind with which many of God’s saints are very familiar. You do not doubt your salvation. You know that Christ is yours. However, you do not always enjoy the light of his countenance. You know that he is yours; but your soul does not always feed upon that blessed fact. You are, in your heart, assured that you have a vital saving interest in Christ; but, still you do not sense that his left hand is under your head and that his right hand embraces you. There are times when the believer sings tenor and bass at the same time. We sing with great delight —
“Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine,
Oh what a foretaste of glory Divine!
Heir of salvation, purchased of God,
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.”
While at the same time we sing —
“How tedious and tasteless the hours
When Jesus no longer I see;
Sweet prospects, sweet birds, and sweet flowers
Have all lost their sweetness to me.”
It may be that there are some saints who are always at their best, who never lose the light of the Savior’s face, and whose communion with him is never disturbed. I am not sure that such persons exists; but there may be some.
But those believers with whom I am most intimate have a different experience. And those people I know who always boast of their constant bliss are not the most reliable sort of people.
For myself, speaking from my own heart’s experience, I have always had a mixture of joy and sorrow. Every year of my life has had a winter as well as a summer. Every day has its night. I have seen the clear shining of the Sun of Righteousness. And I have felt the heavy rains. I have walked in the warm breezes of the summer’s evening. And I have made my way through the snowy blizzards of winter’s night. I am sure that I speak for many of you.
Like the oak tree, our sap is always there; but it is not always flowing with equal vigor. We do, at times, lose our leaves. We have our downs, as well as our ups. We have our valleys, as well as our mountain tops. We are not always rejoicing. Sometimes we are in heaviness through our manifold trials. We are grieved by the fact that our fellowship with Christ is not always full of rapturous delight. At times, we have to seek him, crying, — “Oh, that I knew where I might find him!”
That appears to me to be the sense of our text. It is a song both of joy and of sorrow. It is the sweet song of assurance; but it is mingled with an earnest longing for fellowship.
Proposition: Though we may experience times of spiritual trial, when our fellowship and communion with Christ is broken, the assurance of our hearts that we are accepted in the beloved need not be broken.
Assurance is based upon Christ’s finished work for us. Fellowship and communion with Christ vary with our daily experiences. I do not always enjoy the company of my wife, because we are at times separated; but I always enjoy the assurance of her love. And I do not always enjoy sweet fellowship with Christ; but I do enjoy this blessed assurance — “My Beloved is mine; and I am his.”
Divisions: I want to show you three things in our text.
1. It is possible and profitable for us to have assurance of our personal, saving interest in Christ.
2. It is wise for us to know where Christ is, where he reveals himself, and makes himself known.
3. It is the desire of every renewed soul to know the conscious presence and fellowship of Christ.
First, I want to show you that it is possible for us to enjoy the assurance of our personal interest in Christ. I do not suggest that every believer has this assurance. But I do say that every believer can and should have an assurance of his personal, saving interest in Christ. These are the words of confident faith and blessed assurance — “My Beloved is mine, and I am his.”
Most people look in the wrong places when they seek assurance. —
Look not to your experience, but to his expiation. — Look not to your repentance, but to his ransom. — Look not to your faith, but to his faithfulness. — Look not to your works, but to his worth. — Look not to your feelings, but to his fulness. — Look not to your prayers, but to his promises. — Look not to your righteousness, but to his righteousness!
Look to Christ alone!
(Colossians 2:6) As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:
Mark the words of this sentence — “My Beloved is mine, and I am his.” If you are a believer, your heart should rejoice to use such language.
Do you not delight to call Christ your Beloved? Certainly, he should be beloved by you. Who has done so much for you as Christ? Who has lavished you with such gifts? Who has shown you such love? If you do not love him, you are a lost soul, yet under the wrath of God (1 Corinthians 16:22). All who are redeemed by his precious blood and saved by his matchless grace love him. — “We love him because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19).
If you know him, you love him. I would not have you to be presumptuous. But I would have all of you who know Christ to call him “My Beloved.” — He deserves this title in your heart.
Š He redeemed you with his own precious blood.
Š He adopted you into his family.
Š He saved you by his matchless grace.
Š He loved you with an everlasting love.
There was a time when he became the beloved one of your heart — When he first revealed his love to you. —It is true today, more than ever, we do love Christ. He is “My Beloved.”
“My Beloved is mine!”
Spurgeon said, “Every heart that has been renewed by sovereign grace takes Jesus Christ to be the chief object of its love. — I ask you, my friends, do you love Christ? Is he the Beloved one of your hearts? “My Beloved is mine!”
The Lord Jesus espoused us to himself and betrothed us to himself “in righteousness and in judgment., and in loving-kindness, and in mercies, and in faithfulness,” and espoused us to himself forever! So that, (O astonishing grace!) he that is our Maker is become our husband!
That means that we have him and all things pertaining to life and salvation in him and with him. — We have him in us as the hope of glory, dwelling in our hearts by faith, living there as in his own house and temple, and reigning there as our King by his grace and Spirit, as in his own palace. — Christ is mine, for he liveth in me!
“My Beloved is mine, and I am His!”
I am his because he is mine! We are his by the Father’s gift. He that gives Christ to us, gives us to Christ; and this he did in the everlasting covenant, to be his bride and wife, to be his portion and inheritance, and to be kept and preserved by him safe to glory. Christ having pitched his love upon us, chose us for his own, and asked us of his Father, who granted his request. — “Thine they were,” says our Beloved, “and thou gavest them me” (John 17:6). We are…
Š His by the bands of his everlasting, immutable love.
Š His by the grace of his sovereign election.
Š His by the blood of his special purchase. — He bought us with the price, not of corruptible things such as silver and gold, but with his own most precious blood!
Š His by the power of his irresistible grace.
As John Gill put it, — “By the conquest of his grace upon our hearts he pulls down the strong-holds of our hearts enters in with his glorious train and retinue of grace, dispossesses Satan, dethrones sin, sets up a throne for himself, and places his own Spirit in the midst of us, which is the grand evidence of our being his; ‘for if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.’ And he that has the Spirit of Christ, is one of his.”
And I am his by my own willful, deliberate choice. — Are you a believer? If so, then Christ is yours, and you are his. You are the sheep of his pasture. You are the partners of his love. You are the members of his body. You are the branches of his stem. You belong to him. Made willing in the day of his power, we willingly, voluntarily, delightfully, give ourselves to our Beloved (Isaiah 44:5).
“One shall say, I am the LORD’S; and another shall call himself by the name of Jacob; and another shall subscribe with his hand unto the LORD, and surname himself by the name of Israel.” (Isaiah 44:5)
We are his, totally, unreservedly his. — I belong to him. He may do with me what he will.
If Christ is our and we are his, then all he has is ours. — All his perfections are ours. All the perfections of his being, all the attributes of his Godhead are engaged for our eternal good and welfare. — Is he the Almighty? Then he is able to save us from law, sin, hell and death, and to keep and preserve us safe to his kingdom and glory. — Is he omnipresent? We enjoy his gracious presence, in all places and in all his ordinances. — Is he omniscient? Then he knows us, knows our needs, knows our enemies, knows our weaknesses, and knows our way. He is both able and willing to help in time of need. His grace is sufficient! — Is he immutable? Is he Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever? Then we need not then fear any variation of his mind, any alteration in his love, or change in our state.
If Christ is our and we are his, then Christ himself is ours! His acceptance with the Father is our acceptance. His blood is ours to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. His righteousness is ours to justify us. His grace is ours to forgive, save, pardon and keep us! His promises are ours! His fulness is ours!
If Christ is our and we are his, then all he has is ours. That means that we can want no good thing! He has the ability to help us and the heart to help us!
I haven’t begun to expound the text yet. I’m just skimming the surface of this vast ocean of blessedness. Our text also speaks of our blessed union with Christ. —— “My Beloved is mine, and I am his!” This union is a personal union, a union of our persons. The whole person of Christ, as our God-man Mediator, is united to every believer. And the whole person of a believer, body and soul and spirit, is united to Christ. And by virtue of this union, as the souls of the God’s elect shall be received into everlasting habitations till the resurrection morning, so our bodies shall be raised from their dusty beds and shall then live with Christ for evermore.
“My Beloved is mine, and I am his!” — This union is a spiritual union, the spiritual of Christ and his people. “He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit.” We are one with Christ spiritually, walking in the Spirit and living in the Spirit, “being made partakers of the divine nature.” Because we are one with Christ, it is written, “as he is so are we in this world!”
This spiritual union of Christ and his people is a mysterious union, a mystery that defies explanation; but the fact that it is mystical, spiritual and unexplainable does not make in any the less real or any the less blessed! On the contrary: — The most blessed and the most substantial things we know are mystical and spiritual. — The union of the three persons in one divine essence and humanity and deity Christ are very mysterious. These, without controversy, are the great mysteries of godliness. And next to them is this union of our souls to Christ. — “This is a great mystery, but I speak of Christ and the church” (Ephesians 5:32). So great is the mystery and so great is the reality of our union with Christ that our Savior himself compares it to the union of the three divine persons in the eternal Godhead (John 17:11-23).
(John 17:11-23) “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. 12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled. 13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. 14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. 16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 17 ¶ Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. 18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. 19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. 20 ¶ Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” (John 17:11-23)
I’ve got to move on; but I cannot neglect to tell you that this union, “My Beloved is mine and I am his!” — This union is a vital union!
(Ephesians 1:15-23) “Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, 16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; 17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: 18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, 19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, 20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, 21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: 22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, 23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.” (Ephesians 1:15-23)
“My Beloved is mine and I am his!” What sweet assurance that must be! How can I have such assurance as this? (1 Peter 3:15).
(1 Peter 3:15) But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.
What is the basis of this assurance? How can a person be assured that he has a saving interest in Christ? How can I know I am my Beloved’s and that he is mine?
(Colossians 1:23) If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister.
It is vital that we know who Christ is, where he reveals himself and makes himself known. — The soul, being assured of its personal interest in Christ, longs to know where he is. — “Where is my Beloved?” asks the soul, and the answer comes — “He feedeth among the lilies.”
Š The Redeemed in Glory.
Š The Saints upon Earth.
Š The Assembly of His saints.
(Matthew 18:20) For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
(1 Corinthians 3:16-17) Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? (17) If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
Š The Ordinances of the Gospel.
Š The Book of Inspiration.
Our Hope and Joy
It is the desire of every believer to know the conscious presence and fellowship of Christ (v. 17). Here is our hearts’ great desire, our souls’ great joy and our blessed hope.
(Song of Songs 2:17) Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of Bether.
Š This is our night, soon our day will break.
NOTE: When the gospel day broke forth the shadows of the law fled away.
Š The mountains which separate us from our Lord, He can overcome. They are too high for us, but not for him.
Š Our hearts earnestly desire the conscious sense of his presence. — “Turn, my Beloved!”
(Psalms 42:1) As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.
(Psalms 84:2) My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the LORD: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.
Š Soon, he shall appear! — And when that great breaking of eternal day comes, all the shadows of darkness and confusion will pass away!
(Isaiah 25:9) “And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the LORD; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.”
(Isaiah 35:10) “And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”
Listen to sermons at FreeGraceRadio.com
[i] Danville — (PM 08/15/10)
Booneville, NC — (08/10/10)
Readings: Bob Poncer and James Jordan
Tape # Z-94b