TOPIC:"The Flaming Passion of a Fervent Heart"
TEXT:II Corinthians 5:11-21
"For the love of Christ constraineth us" (5:14)
There has been no other man in the history of the church of Jesus Christ whose life made such an impact and left such an indelible mark on Christianity as that of Saint Paul. This intensity of heart and passion of soul is clearly seen in one word of our text. It is the word "constraineth" - "the love of Christ constraineth me." Some of the other translations use the following words: "impels me," "drives me," "overmasters me," "compels me," "overwhelms me," and "monopolizes me."
What the Apostle Paul is talking about in our text is a life that has been given over exclusively and unreservedly to Christ. It is a life that has been claimed, captured, and totally controlled by the great Lover of the soul, the Lord Jesus Christ. To put it in the words of the hymn writer:
"My Jesus I love Thee, I know Thou art mine;
For Thee all the follies of sin I resign;
My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art Thou-:
If ever I loved Thee my Jesus, 'tis now."
Consider, to begin with, we have here loves POWER to CHANGE us. Notice carefully Paul's words in verses 14 and 15: "We thus judge that, if one died for all, then were all dead; And that He died for all, that they who live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto Him, who died for them, and rose again."
What Saint Paul is teaching here is this: When the love of Christ is received by sinful and selfish man, the power of that . . .