But if we do want to boast, then let us boast that we receive from the fullness of Christ, that we are enlightened by Him, attain forgiveness of sin, and become children of God through Him. For this is the sum and substance of it all: Whoever wishes to be safe guarded from the devil's might and to escape sin and death must draw from this well, Christ; from Him flows all salvation and eternal bliss. This fountain is inexhaustible; it is full of grace and truth before God; it never fails no matter how much we draw from it. Even if we all dip from it without stopping, it cannot be emptied, but it remains a perennnial fount of all frace and trugh, and unfathomable well, an eternal fountain. The more we draw from it, the more it gives. Such water, as St. John remarks later, wells up to eternal life. (John 4:1-4).
The sun is not dimmed and darkened by shining on so many people or by providing the entire wold with its light and bright splendor. It retains its light intact. It loses nothing; it is immeasurable, perhaps able to illumine ten more worlds. I suppose that a hundred thousand candles can be ignited from one light, and still this light will not lose any of its brilliance. Likewise, a learned man can educate a thousand scholars without forfeiting any of his own learning. The more he shares with others, the more he has himself. Thus Christ, our Lord, to whom we must flee and of whom we must ask all, is an interminable well, the chief course of all grace, truth, righteousness, wisdom, and life, without limit, measure, or end. Even if the whole world were to draw from this fountain enough grace and truth to transform all people into angels, still it would not lose as much as a drop. This fountain constantly overflows with sheer grace. Whoever wishes to enjoy Christ's grace -and no one is excluded- let him come and receive it from Him. You will never drain this fountain of living water, it will never run dry. You will all draw from it much more than enough, and yet it will remain a perennial well.
~from Martin Luther's sermons on the Gospel of St. John, p. 134 in vol. 22 of Luther's Works, American Edition
Thursday, February 12, 2009
More than Enough!
In my Treasury of Daily Prayer, the New Testament reading for yesterday was about Jesus and the Woman of Samaria at the well. He told her, "The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life." (John 4: 15) Below is the writing along with it with parts in bold that impressed me with how generous our Lord and Savior is.