If we were asked to give one of the most blessed words our Lord spake, we would not hesitate to say it is the word, "Come." It may be termed the royal Word of Grace. Proceeding from the ever-blessed Son of God, what meaning it has for the Sinners and Saints! He had come to His own. His message to them was as given in Isaiah, "Come now and let us reason together, saith the Lord; though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." They refused this gracious invitation.
Christ Jesus came to His own and His own received Him not. There in Galilee He stood uttering His solemn woe upon Chorazin, Bethsaida, and Capernum, where His mighty works had been done. But then when He pronounced judgment upon them He also addressed the Father and spoke the never to be forgotten words, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28). God only knows the number of weary, heavy-laden souls, bowed down by sin and shame, who heard this royal Word of Grace, who came to Him just as they were and found that the Son of God gives rest. And how? Blessed be His Name! He has taken our load of guilt, our sin and shame, our penalty upon Himself. He died in our stead and therefore bids sinners welcome. Ah! The countless thousands who heard, who believed, who came, who discovered it to be blessedly true-- Rest and Peace in Him! And this precious word we find often repeated.
Look at Zacchaeus in the sycamore tree, the chief of the publicans. The Lord knew him-- his sin, his burdened conscience and Jesus wanted him the chief of the publicans. He told Zacchaeus, "Make haste, come down." (Luke 19:6) And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully. He bade him to make haste. It is the still the same heart of love, which bids the sinner to hasten and come to Him. How stubborn the human heart and will to refuse such Grace He still offers. And again we remember the well-known words John 6:37, "Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out." There is no condition, but the most positive assurance that a welcome, such as our poor sinful hearts can never fathom, awaits him that cometh to the Son of God. John 14:6 "No man cometh unto the Father, but by me." This is what it means. We come to Christ Jesus and by Him unto the Father.
In the parable of the Great Supper, He uttered this blessed word, "Come for all things are now ready." It is the word addressed to such as we are, outcasts, dying, lost sinners. And what has Grace made ready? All the sinner needs. Nothing is left unprovided. There is welcome so wonderful that our unbelieving hearts cannot fully grasp it. And in that parable we also read that He sent into the highways and hedges with the message, "Compel them to come in." We have often said to the unsaved, sometimes to those who have gone down into the depths of sin, "The Lord wants you!" Compel them to come in!
How often this precious, blessed word must have fallen from His lips, unrecorded by the Holy Spirit in the Gospels. When they crowded about Him with their sick, their demon-possessed, the lepers, the blind and those suffering with diverse diseases, then Christ's loving, "Come," greeted them. How many with fear and trembling must have approached Him only to find that His loving arms were opened wide to receive them. And this blessed word still goes forth to sinners. "And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." (Rev. 22:17)
And when we have come to Him and found in Him rest, peace, life and all our needs supplied, the Royal Word of Grace is still for us.
"Come and see," He said to the disciples who followed Him and they came and saw and abode with the Lord Jesus. Come and see is a constant phrase of invitation and cheer to His own. "I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst." (John 6:35). How true it is. Yet we hunger and thirst but it is after Him and He bids us come and eat and drink anew.
"If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink." (John 7:37). Yea we have come and still we may come and have our cups filled at the fountain of His love. "Come" is His blessed word to His own. Come with your burdens; come with your failures; come with your sins; come with your questions; come with your heartache; come with everything and all. Christ Jesus has a welcome ready and His Grace meets all the needs of His people.
And there is the "Come" for service. Mark 1:17: And Jesus said unto them, "Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men." (Mark 1:17) He calls His own to service and He calls them to rest after service at His feet. "Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while." (Mark 6:31) Both service and rest after service is in His hands. Blessed are we if we look to Him for both. May we ever hear this royal Word of Grace from our Lord.
There is another "Come" still. Before the Lord Jesus left His disciples to go away, He told them, "I will come again and receive you unto Myself." (John 14:3). In 1Thess. 4: 13-18 we read how He will come again to receive His own. He will call His Saints together with a shout. Nothing is said of what the shout will be. It has often occurred to us in prayerful meditation that it may be the simple word, "Come." Thus the voice said to John after he had heard the Seven Messages to the Churches, "Come up hither!" The royal Word of Grace will call His beloved co-heirs from Earth's conflict to victory, from sorrow and suffering to joy unspeakable, from shame and reproach to glory. "Come." Ah! What a homegoing it will be! What it will be for Him, when Christ calls at last to come home. What surprises will await us in the Father' s house with its many mansions. What joy when He has them all with Himself, who responded to His, "Come," who trusted Him on earth! And what it will be to respond to the last "Come" and see the Lord Jesus as He is and be forever with the Lord!
"Only a little longer!" Then, O Lord, to see Thee! How our hearts yearn, Lord Jesus, to behold Thy face-- To see Thee in Thy beauty, all gloriously transcendent, No cloud between too high Thy peerless Grace.
"Only a little longer!" Then to be like Thee Forevermore like Thine own self to be, Through the glad days of never-ending ages To find our Light, our Song, our All-- in Thee.
Our Hope Magazine, Volume 28, Year 1922. Modified for the Web by Cobblestone Road Ministries