Friday, June 17, 2016
Emotion vs Emotionalism
What is true emotion as contrasted with both emotionalism and sentimentalism? It is never artificially or lightly produced. man cannot create emotion; it is too deep for that. It is always the result of an understanding of truth itself. True emotion always results from a recognition of the truth; and the result is that it is characterized by depth. There is also an element of nobility in it, and of wonder and amazement. You never find that in emotionalism, which is all excitement, frothy, voluble, on the surface. Neither does emotion have the politeness of the mere sentimentalist. . . .
Emotion is profound, is noble; there is always in it an element of wonder, surprise, amazement. The whole person is gripped and moved in the manner I have illustrated out of Scripture.
Another very valuable test is that true emotion is always energizing. It is like an electric battery which gives you power and it moves you and stimulates you. It has not the excess, the riot of emotionalism; it is not the mere playing with emotion that characterized sentimentalism; but is the result of the energy and power of the Holy Spirit. It means that the whole man is galvanized by the life of God.
The result is that true emotion always leads to action, and always makes a difference. If you think you have felt something in a service now and again, and you desire to know whether it is true emotion or not, the time for testing is not while you are still in the building; it is the day after. You can experience emotionalism and sentimentalism in a meeting; but if it is a true emotion as a result of seeing something of the truth, or a glimpse of God, or the Lord Jesus Christ, and some recognition of the glory of it all, it will continue. It will move you to action. It will master you, guide you, direct you; it will be with you; it will have energized you, it will have been productive. It is comparable to what the Apostle is writing to the Galatians calls “the fruit of the Spirit”; and it is glorious abiding fruit.
D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, “The Christian Warfare: An Exposition of Ephesians 6:10-13,” pg.204-205