August Francke

Faith the Means of Our Happiness

“But, while faith,” he says, “ is the ground of our justification, it is also the means of happiness; for righteousness and peace cannot be separated from one another. But when we say that our happiness is secured, it must be remembered that something more is intended, than that we shall hereafter be admitted into heaven.

This happiness begins from the moment of our justification. For we are then delivered from the wrath and curse of God, from the power of sin and death. We are brought out of darkness into light, from death unto life. God the Father brings us into the kingdom of his Son, and gives us the pledge of an inheritance, even the spirit of Jesus Christ; renews us in his image, day by day; awakens a holy fear, and love in our hearts, so that we run with alacrity in the way of his commandments, and think it our meat and drink to do his will.

Thus does the believer’s happiness commence. He now knows that this heavenly Father loves him, and that he will help him to overcome every adversary to his peace.

He is now united to Christ and knows that He is his riches, his glory, his all.

He knows that his prayers will be heard through the merits of Christ; and that all needful things will be given him.

He has the spirit of God dwelling in his heart, filling him with all knowledge, and enabling him to grow daily in faith and love.

He finds happiness, too, in the service of God, is doing good to all men as he has opportunity and in the exercise of true benevolence and compassion.

He is, by his union with the Redeemer, changed into the heavenly image, and although he dwells on earth, and mingles in the affairs of men, his conversation is in heaven; and he joins in spirit with its blessed inhabitants in prayer and praise to God. His heart is in heaven, for there he has laid up his treasure; and through the Spirit he holds perpetual intercourse with God.

Oh! what blessedness is this thus to be united, in the closest ties, with the adorable Trinity; to have the Great God dwelling in our hearts, and holding his court there; to have angels for our ministers, and to know that as Christ overcame, and is seated on his throne, so shall we triumph over our foes, and sit down with him in the kingdom of Heaven.

This blessedness is begun below; but it is completed in that other world, where sin and sorrow can never enter to mar his peace; and where the ransomed sinner shall be conformed to the image of his God, and see his face, and praise him for ever and ever.”—August Francke