“All things that the Father hath are mine.”—John 16:15.
Remember where all things are to be had; and that therefore, if you would believe, you must remember, that faith to believe in the Son of God is to be had where all other things are. Faith is the gift of God; and Christ is the Author of faith; therefore, seek not to bring faith out of your own bowels; for, as faith comes by hearing, so nothing but the power of God can produce it effectually; that is, by the gospel’s coming, not in word only, but in power, and in the Holy Ghost. This power works secretly and silently upon the heart in hearing, when, perhaps, the person little knows that it is the power of God that is dealing with his heart; when yet, while the Spirit is in the word, shewing the things of Christ, there may be a heart-beating towards him: a heart-bleeding, a heart-bursting, a heart-burning towards him: and possibly, the heart that was hard like a rock, now melting like water before the Lord; yea, under this drawing power of the Spirit, there may be heart-panting after the Lord, and yet the poor soul, perhaps, doth not know that the power of God is present. This faith comes not by working or doing, or forcing yourselves up to some strong actings: but it comes by hearing: the actings of faith come by hearing of the object of faith presented in the word, and by hearing what the Spirit says of his glory.
Why then do you stand poring over your lack of power to act faith, as if you were to pull it out of your own breast? You will be nearer to your purpose, if you pore over the object of faith, wherein all things are. The soul, in believing, considers not, What can I do, but What can Christ do? Not, What have I in me, but, what hath Christ in him? It is taken up with nothing but Christ; and it is the best act of faith that loses itself, and is swallowed up in his fullness.
Rev. Ralph Erskine