Happiness is…

Written by William Mason

scan0029If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.- John 3:17.

Jesus is a prophet to teach, a priest to atone, and a king to reign by love in the hearts of all his subjects.

So a Christian receives the Lord Jesus. Faith in him begets an ear of love to his doctrine, and a heart of obedience to his commands. Let no one call evangelical obedience, legal bondage. For, every precept that drops from the mouth of Jesus, flows from love to us. When he saith, “Do this;” it is for thy happiness and good, O soul. “Avoid that:” love is careful of thee, “Do thyself no harm.” This is pleasant to the renewed soul to hear, his happiness to obey. Faith in Jesus makes all things easy. “His commandments are not grievous.” To know them is our privilege. To do them is our happiness.

Say, O Christian, is not this thy experience?

Art thou not happy in doing the will of Jesus, who died for our sins? Art thou not delighted in obeying Jesus, who hath made peace between God and thy soul? Art thou not joyful in glorifying thy Father, by bringing forth the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ? Verily IN keeping thy commandments, O Lord, there is great reward of grace; in peace and happiness of soul now; and hereafter such shall hear that joyful sentence from our loving Saviour, “Come ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”- Mat_25:34. Then shall the works of the righteous be owned and proclaimed by the judge. They are called to inherit the kingdom. Why? Because blessed of God the Father with all spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus.

Hence the kingdom is prepared for them before the foundation of the world.  But it constitutes no part of the believer’s happiness, to do any work whatsoever, whereby to entitle himself to the favor of God; or to make the work of salvation more effectual than the blood and righteousness of the Son of God hath. No; this is to be rejected as the vilest slavery, the worst of drudgery; contrary to faith; inconsistent with Christian love; and derogatory to the salvation of JESUS. Luther was wont to say, ‘if picking up a straw would save me, I would not do it; it would be an act of unbelief of my dear Lord’s salvation: but being already saved by Jesus, through his grace, I would go through fire and water to obey his commands.’ Where Jesus is the life of the soul, this will be manifest, in obedience to his commands. “Blessed is the man who delighteth greatly in his commandments.”- Psa_112:1.

I hear thy word with love.
And I would fain obey:
Send thy good Spirit from above
To guide me lest I stray.

How perfect is thy word!
And all thy judgments just,
For ever sure thy promise, Lord,
Here I securely trust.

While of thy works I sing,
Thy glory to proclaim,
Accept the praise, my God and King,
In my Redeemer’s name.

Meet the author and part of your Christian heritage:  William Mason (1719 – 29 September 1791) was a Calvinist writer. Mason was born in Rotherhithe. He wrote a number of very popular Christian books, and was twice briefly editor of The Gospel Magazine, immediately before and immediately after Augustus Montague Toplady.
Some of his writings include:  
A Spiritual Treasury for the Children of God
The Christian Communicant
A commentary on Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, printed as footnotes in some copies of the same as “Mason’s Notes”.
The Believer’s Pocket Companion
References:  Hatfield, Edwin Francis. The Poets of the Church, New York, 1884, pages 412–414
Excerpts from Wikipedia, source material from  ilyston

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