爱是对善的喜乐

J. N. Darby 弟兄说: 爱就是那个“对善的喜乐(joy in good)”,正是靠着这个喜乐,使得我们从“倾向于认定恶(readiness to suppose evil)” 的光景里被释放出来。

在看事情和人时,我们倾向于“认定恶”。 比如,我们会先入地定论别人是错的,至少不如自己正确。这是真的。 昨天,我看到一个弟兄对某件事的某种态度,我心里就生出反感,因为我认定他的意思是出自一个恶念。但圣灵却不许我有这个结论,劝我说,你岂能如此确定那个弟兄的态度是你想的那样呢?即使你的结论最后是对的,你这种先入地认定恶(readiness to suppose evil)也不是从爱里出来的。

求主光照我们,救我们脱离这种先入地认定恶的倾向(readiness to suppose evil)。  这个恶在我们中间,伤害基督的身体,伤害 神儿女的生命。

同时,这个倾向,也是我们常常读不懂 神的话的原因,因为我们心里事先藏着一个认定的恶,我们败坏的心思非常擅长于曲解 神的话。

爱并非看万事都是对的。不是。人从 神那里得着另一个恩赐,即先知的恩赐,可以明辨是非。这个也正是使徒保罗在哥林多前书劝每个信主的人羡慕寻求的恩赐 (林前14:1)。保罗说的“先知”,是一个动词(prophesy) 或代表动作的名词 (prophecy),而不是一个名称(prophet)。也就是说,保罗说的先知的恩赐,并不是指一些特别的称为“先知”的人向众人预言将来的事,而是在基督里领悟属灵的事,并且发表出来。严格讲,属灵的事,都是将来的事(因为眼见的在先,眼不见的在后),明白属灵事的人,都有先知恩赐,这是每个认识主的人都应该羡慕得到的。即使缺乏讲道的恩赐,我们至少都可以通过祷告、读经、交通、听道来明辨。

但使徒保罗在哥林多前书重点强调: 基督的爱是我们每个人里面最大的恩赐,也是最大的管家,也是 神家中最大的管家。没有爱的管理,我们个人里面的先知就“算不得什么” (林前13:2)。即如果没有爱,我们里面的先知就不可能成就任何有益的事,就是 nothing,不是因为先知恩赐不够大而不算什么,而是因为如果没有爱,先知的恩赐在本质上就不是什么。

林前 8:1,说,“知识使人自高自大,唯有爱能造就人”。 使徒拿“能造就人”和“自高自大”做反差,而不是用 “谦卑” 和“自高自大”做反差。  因为“骄傲” 不仅仅是先入地认定自己是对的, 而且同时也是 “先入地认定别人是错的” 。这就是 Darby 弟兄说的“先入地认定恶的倾向”(readiness to suppose evil)。 就此来讲,知识先让人骄傲,而骄傲的人则总是先入地认定恶 (always ready to suppose evil), 只有破坏、伤害的能力,毫无造就人的能力。

相反,爱却有一个宝贝品质:对善的喜乐 (joy in good)。 父的心总是这样,因为祂看到得救的人里面的基督,就喜乐,那是对真善的真喜乐 (real joy in real good)。

“对善的喜乐 joy in good” 不至于自满,因为圣灵总是不停留在现状,而是不停努力增加我们里面的基督。

下面的英文, 是根据 J. N. Darby 有关林前13章的 Synopsis 改写的。我在有些句子上稍稍“白话文” 了一下,因为原文的句子结构可能不太好读。同时也在括弧里把所指的经文包括了。经节引用不是我加的,是原文所指的,我只是把内容加了进去,否则会由于缺上下文而看不出来。 

Love is conformity to the nature of God, the living expression of what God is, the manifestation of having been made partakers of His nature; it is the acting and feeling according to His likeness.

This love is developed in reference to others; but others are not the motive, although they are the object. It has its source within; its strength is independent of objects with which it is occupied. Thus love can act where circumstances might produce irritation or jealousy in the human heart. Love acts according to its own nature in the circumstances; The circumstances do not act upon the man who is full of love who judges them according to that nature, except so far as they supply in an occasion for love’s activity, and direct its form.

Love is its own motive. In us, participation in the divine nature is the only source of love. Communing with God Himself alone sustains love through all the difficulties it has to surmount in its path. This love is the opposite of selfishness and of self-seeking, and shuts it out, seeking the good of others, even (as to its principle) as God has sought us in grace (Ephesians 4:32, Ephesians 5:1-2). What a power to avoid evil in oneself, forget all in order to do good!

Love is firstly a renunciation of self (1 Corinthians 13:4-5a,love is long-suffering, is kind, envies not, boasts not one’s self, is not puffed up, does not behave unseemly, does not seek its own things, and is not provoked easily).

Love is that joy in good which sets the heart free from the readiness to suppose evil (1 Corinthians 13:5b-6, love does not impute evil, does not rejoice in iniquity, and rejoices with the truth). (This readiness to suppose evil is so natural to human nature, on account of its own depth of evil, and that which it also experiences in the world.)

Love is a positive energy (1 Corinthians 13:7, love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things). This positive energy – the source of every kind thought – by the powerful spring of His divine nature, presumes good when it does not see it, and bears with evil when it sees it, covering it by long suffering and patience; not bringing it to light, but bearing it in its own depth – a depth which is unfathomable.

Because love never changes (1 Corinthians 13:8a).

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