by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
“Here is a superb bit of psychology, for what after all, is the main cause of this spirit of fear? The answer is ‘self’ – self-love, self-concern, self-protection. Had you realized that the essence of this trouble is that these fearful people are really too absorbed in self – how can I do this, what if I fail? ‘I’ – they are constantly turning in upon themselves, looking at themselves and concerned about themselves. And it is just here that the spirit of love comes in, for there is only one way to get rid of yourself. There is only one cure for self. You will never deal with self yourself. That was the fatal fallacy of those poor men who became monks and anchorites. They could get away from the world and from other people, but they could not get away from themselves. Your self is inside you and you cannot get rid of him, the more you mortify yourself the more your self will torment you.
There is only one way to get rid of self, and that is that you should be come so absorbed in someone or something else that you have no time to think about yourself. Thank God, the Spirit of God makes that possible. He is not only the ‘spirit of power’, but He is also the ‘spirit of love’. What does it mean? It means love to God, love to the great God who made us, love to the great God who has made the way of redemption for us miserable creatures – for us who deserve nothing but hell. He has ‘loved us with an everlasting love’. Think of that, says Paul to Timothy, and as you become absorbed in the love of God you will forget all about yourself. ‘The spirit of love!’ It will deliver you from self-interest, self-concern, and from depression about self, because depression results from self and self-concern. It gets rid of self at all points. So talk to yourself about this eternal, amazing love of God – the God Who ever looked upon us in spite of sin and planned the way of redemption and spared not His own Son but delivered Him up for us all.”
D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and Cures, (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1965), 103.
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Romans 8:31–32 “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?”
Ephesians 3:14–19 “For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”