August 3rd 2018 – Proverbs 19:4-7

Wealth brings many new friends,
    but a poor man is deserted by his friend.
A false witness will not go unpunished,
    and he who breathes out lies will not escape.
Many seek the favour of a generous man,
    and everyone is a friend to a man who gives gifts.
All a poor man's brothers hate him;
    how much more do his friends go far from him!
He pursues them with words, but does not have them.

Proverbs 19:4-7

Here is the quotation from Denney, mentioned in yesterday's Note: 'Those who are in Christ have died to the whole order of life in which men are judged 'after the flesh'. Perhaps the Christian Church has almost as much need as any other society to lay this to heart. We are still too ready to put stress upon distinctions which are quite in place in the world, but are without ground in Christ. Even in a Christian congregation there is a recognition of wealth, of learning, of social position, in some countries of race, which is not Christian. I do not say that these distinctions are not real, but they are meaningless in relation to Christ, and ought not to be made. To make them narrows and impoverishes the soul. If we associate only with people of a certain station, and because of their station, all our thoughts and feelings are limited to a very small area of human life; but if distinctions of station, of intelligence, of manners, are lost in the common relation to Christ, then life is open to us in all its length and breadth; all things are ours, because we are His. To be guided by worldly distinctions is to know only a few people, and to know them by what is superficial in their nature; but to see that such distinctions died in Christ's death, and to look at men in relation to Him who is Redeemer and Lord of all, is to know our brethren, and to know them not on the surface, but to the heart. People lament everywhere the want of a truly social and brotherly feeling in the Church, and try all sorts of well-meant devices to stimulate it, but nothing short of this goes to the root of the matter. The social, in this universal sense, is dependent upon the religions. Those who have died in Christ to the world in which these separating distinctions reign will have no difficulty in recognising each other as one in Him. Society is transfigured for each one of us when this union is accomplished; the old things have passed, and all has become new.'