Looking Unto Jesus
Christ declares, "Abide in me, and I in you. As a branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me" (John 15:4).A branch derives life from the vine...
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Christ declares, "Abide in me, and I in you. As a branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me" (John 15:4).A branch derives life from the vine by virtue of its union with the vine. Similarly, Christ is the vine, and we are the branches. There is a vital, organic union between us. We draw on Christ's life through the Holy Spirit, who dwells in us. We must, therefore, abide in Christ by cultivating close and constant communion with him. That is to say, we must continually look "unto Jesus the author and finisher of faith" (Hebrews 12:2).The present work seeks to explain what this looking implies. It does so by turning to the writings of two largely forgotten Puritans and Baptists from the seventeenth century--Thomas Wilcox and Vavasor Powell. Together, they teach us that to abide in Christ is to behold him in his manifold roles and relations. As we do, Christ becomes our all in all.
J. Stephen Yuille resides in Glen Rose, Texas, with his wife, Alison, and their daughters, Laura and Emma. He is the Teaching Pastor at Grace Community Church and Adjunct Professor of Practical Theology at Redeemer Seminary in Dallas. He is the author of The Inner Sanctum of Puritan Piety (2007), Puritan Spirituality (2008), Trading and Thriving in Godliness (2008), and Living Blessedly Forever (2012).