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Love seeks not its own

Filed Under: Luther's Devotions

They brought to him one that was deaf, and had an impediment
in his speech; and they pleaded with him to put his hand upon
the man.

Mark 7:32.

In this text both faith and love are presented to us. Faith,
in that these people had before heard how kind and compassionate
Jesus was and how he had helped those who had
come to him. Although the text does not state this, yet we
must so conclude, and the facts prove that they must have previously
heard the good tidings of Christ the Lord, on account of
which they believed. This was the beginning of their faith.
For the Word must first have been heard, and must have entered
the human heart, showing the mercy of God in such a way
as to create faith. Then they clung to these tidings, trusted
them, went to him, and hoped to receive of him what they had
heard. In this way faith grows out of the Word of God. We
must, therefore, earnestly search the gospel in order so the
 first stone may be laid. The Word first informs us of the mercy and
goodness of God; faith then lays hold on the Word with firm
confidence, and we obey it. We now become conscious of it in
our hearts and are satisfied. For as soon as we believe we are
already justified and are with Christ in his inheritance.

This text also sets forth the works of love in this, that these
people go and take care of this poor man, just as Christ sent
forth the tidings to them, showing his goodness and mercy,
without any merit in them or their efforts to obtain it. As soon
as they lay hold on that mercy and drink from its fountain, they
again send it forth freely and impart it to their neighbor. These
people do not need this work themselves, they are not looking
for a reward, nor do they even think of themselves, but are only
thinking of the poor man and how they may help him. So
Christians should carefully consider how love works and how
it cares for others. 'Love seeks not its own." "Look not
every man on his own things, but every man also on the things
of others."

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