The most suitable good!
(Thomas Doolittle, "Love to Christ Necessary to Escape the Curse at His Coming!" 1693)
A thing is desirable, because it is suitable. The suitableness of the object allures our desires and love.
Suitableness is the ground of love. A thing might be good in itself, yet, if we apprehend no suitableness in it to us — then the love of our hearts is not upon it. Therefore, in pain and sickness, a man judges ease and health to be better for him than gold and silver — because they are more suitable. A man in hunger and thirst, esteems bread and water to be better than honors and pleasures — because they are more suitable.
Love to Christ is grounded on the soul discerning the suitableness of Christ unto him. He says,
"Food is not more suitable to a hungry man,
nor medicine to a sick man,
nor clothing to a naked man —
than Christ is to me, a poor, sinful, and lost man — an undone, perishing, and damned man! For . . .
I am naked — and He will clothe me with His perfect righteousness,
I am blind — and He will restore my spiritual sight,
I am enslaved to sin and Satan — and He will give me liberty,
I am lost — and He will save me,
I am guilty — and He will pardon me,
I am polluted — and He will cleanse me,
I am an enemy to God — and He will reconcile me,
I am ignorant — and He will teach me,
I am indebted — and He will be my Surety,
I am poor — and He will make me wealthy to all eternity,
I am a stranger to God — and He brings me into acquaintance with Him,
I am unfit for Heaven — and He will make me fit to be a partaker of the inheritance of the saints in light.
Love to Christ includes a discovery of Christ unto the soul, as the most suitable good.
The most suitable good!In poverty, Christ will be my riches.
In disgrace, Christ will be my honor.
In bonds and imprisonment, Christ will be my liberty.
In pain, Christ will be my comfort.
In death, Christ will be my life.
In the loss of all things, Christ will be better to me than the enjoyment of all these things!
Though I have riches — yet I might be damned.
But if I have Christ — then I shall be saved!
Though men admire me — yet God might loathe me.
But if I have Christ — then the Lord will love me!
Though I prosper in the world, in all my pomp — I might be walking in the way to everlasting misery!
But if I have Christ — He will lead me in the paths unto eternal glory!
Look, O my soul, look around about you, and you shall find none so suitable to you, as the lovely Savior. Then He alone shall have my best love. Is there none for me like Him? Then I will fix my love on Him!