At His Feet
This little phrase occurs some five times in the Gospel according to Luke. Around each mention there is clustered much helpful and practical truth.
According to chapter 7:37-50, the Lord is reclining at meat in a Pharisee’s house. Presently there enters a woman, “Burdened with sin and full of fear, yet drawn by love to venture near.” She stands at His feet behind Him weeping, and her tears, as they rain down on the feet of Him “Whose goings forth have been of old,” they tell so clearly that her heart is truly repentant. As the word of pardon falls from the lips of the One Who has power on earth to forgive sins, there is borne into the contrite heart of this erstwhile sinner a peace that the friends of this world could not know.
We, too, can well remember the time when our need introduced us to the Saviour, and when at His feet “The burden of our sins rolled away.”
In the case of some many years have passed since that memorable day, yet we all look back with increasing gratitude to the moment when we were freely and fully forgiven. No matter how we may advance in spiritual knowledge, we must never allow ourselves to forget the blessed and basic fact that He, Who has atoned for our sins, also has acquitted us from the guilt of them, and has ushered us into the peace that He alone can give.
May the wonder of His pardoning grace ever captivate our souls, so that spontaneous daily praise may ascend to Him, for He is the One to Whom we shall be eternally grateful.
The case of a man, out of whom the demons were departed, is recorded in chapter 8:35. He is seen sitting at the feet of Christ. His restless days of movements are over. He can now sit quietly and contentedly in the Saviour’s presence appreciating the grace of Christ and looking into the face of this One Who so singularly has blessed him.
What a testimony to the emancipating power of the Lord this man was to those who came out to see what had happened.
All around we hear the surge of a restless world, but Christ has made it blessedly possible for us to sit in restful contemplation in His presence, for we too, like David (2 Sam. 7:18), can go in and “sit before the Lord.”
This privilege carries with it untold blessing. The second letter to the Corinthians shows that the Spirit gives liberty of access into the very presence of Christ (3:17-18), where we may gaze upon the unveiled glory in His face. As we thus look upon Him, we become correspondingly like Him through the transforming power of the Lord the Spirit.
Our lamented unlikeness to Him is patent testimony to the fact that we are neglecting this blood-bought privilege of sitting in His presence and taking on His moral likeness.
A man low at the Saviour’s feet in great distress is seen in chapter 8:41-42. He is driven there by an acute sense of need, and by the consciousness that the One, before Whom he presents his earnest petition, is well able to master the situation. His heart is burdened, his prayer is brief, and his request is pointed. He implores the Lord to help.
Life for us, too, has its seasons when “Trouble like a gloomy cloud gathers thick and thunders loud.” At such times we are forced into His presence to experience His sympathy and power. He is always accessible to us, and as we bow in humility at His feet, we are assured that “He is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask” or think.” Most of us have pressing needs or perplexing problems which He alone can meet and solve, and He often allows us to be brought into circumstances in which we are made to feel our own absolute helplessness and our complete dependence upon Himself.
The Epistle to the Hebrews reminds us of His threefold ability to succour, to sympathize, and to save. This should encourage us to bring everything to Him in prayer, for it is in the same Epistle that we are exhorted, on at least seven different occasions, “to draw near.”
A woman is depicted in the attitude of a disciple sitting at the Lord’s feet in chapter 10:37-44. Finally, let us consider her case. Mundane things clamoured for recognition, but she made choice of what, to her, was a needful part. Time thus spent was most profitable, for it made her intelligent concerning the Lord’s mission on earth, as John’s Gospel chapter 12 discloses.
In the person of the Holy Spirit we have the greatest of teachers. It is both His delight and prerogative to take of the things which belong to Christ and to show them unto us. To be independent of human resources and entirely cast upon the Lord for instruction is to put ourselves in the condition of being taught knowledge, understanding, and doctrine (Isa. 28:9). Wherever there is a teachable spirit and a sincere desire to grasp the spiritual significance of Divine truth, “Line upon line, and precept upon precept,” gradually we shall come to know in measure the mind of God as revealed in His Word. We can never afford to neglect this inestimable privilege of sitting at His feet, if we are to apprehend in any measure the will of the Lord.
The cleansed Samaritan leper in chapter 17:15-18 is on his face at the feet of Christ in heartfelt gratitude. His action distinguishes him from the other nine, and from many blessed of the Lord, who are glad enough to accept the blessing, but not grateful enough to thank the Giver.
The unclean condition, which necessitated his taking the “far off” place (v. 12), was now happily changed and with confidence born of an acute sense of healing, he drew near to pour out at his gracious Benefactor’s feet his unstinted thanks. If in Luke 10 we have the good Samaritan, then here we are introduced to the grateful Samaritan.
This story seems to emphasize that it was the man with less knowledge of God than the other cleansed lepers (presumably Jews) who turned back to express his gratitude.
From this we may deduce that it is not always the most spiritually enlightened that feel and express the greatest appreciation. The Lord is still asking, “Where are the nine?” We who claim, as members of the assemblies of God’s people, to know the mind of the Lord should be warned by this incident, lest the spirit of un-thankfulness, a trait of the world in the last days (2 Tim. 3:2 ), descend upon us. How the Lord appreciates the praise of a grateful heart! If we feel the Lord has been good, then “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so” (Psa. 107:2). Up yonder we shall express our gratitude in adoring worship for “We shall fall at His feet and the story repeat, and the Lover of sinners adore.” Meanwhile may we feel so overwhelmed with a sense of our deep indebtedness that we shall often be found at His feet giving glory to God in rendering to Him our thanks.