Tuesday, November 27, 2007

From My Reading...

I recently re-read one of my favorite sermons by Jonathan Edwards entitled "The Excellency of Christ." For those of you who have not read much of Edwards this is a great place to start. Edwards builds his entire premise on the fact that Jesus is referred to in Revelation 5:5-6 as both the LION of the tribe of Judah and the LAMB that had been slain. He seeks to demonstrate, in a most worshipful way, from this example that "there is a conjunction of such excellencies in Christ, as, in our manner of conceiving, are very diverse one from another." In other words, Edwards explores such things as how "infinite majesty" and "transcendent meekness" come together in Jesus Christ. Below are some of the quotes that I found extremely helpful:

Quote #1
"Such a conjunction of infinite highness and low condescension, in the same person, is admirable. We see, by manifold instances, what a tendency a high station has in men, to make them to be of a quite contrary disposition. If one worm be a little exalted above another, by having more dust, or a bigger dunghill, how much does he make of himself! What a distance does he keep from those that are below him! And a little condescension is what he expects should be made much of, and greatly acknowledged. Christ condescends to wash our feet; but how would great men, (or rather the bigger worms,) account themselves debased by acts of far less condescension!"

Quote #2
"The strict justice of God, and even his revenging justice, and that against the sins of men, never was so gloriously manifested. as in Christ. He manifested an infinite regard to the attribute of God's justice, in that, when he had a mind to save sinners, he was willing to undergo such extreme sufferings, rather than that their salvation should be to the injury of the honor of that attribute. And as he is the Judge of the world, he doth himself exercise strict justice, he will not clear the guilty, nor at all acquit the wicked in judgment. Yet how wonderfully is infinite mercy towards sinners displayed in him! And what glorious and ineffable grace and love have been and are exercised by him, towards sinful men! Though he be the just Judge of a sinful world, yet he is also the Savior of the world. Though he be a consuming fire to sin, yet he is the light and life of sinners."

Quote #3
"What is there that you can desire should be in a Savior, that is not in Christ? Or, wherein should you desire a Savior should be otherwise than Christ is? What excellency is there wanting? What is there that is great or good; what is there that is venerable or winning; what is there that is adorable or endearing; or, what can you think of that would be encouraging, which is not to be found in the person of Christ? Would you have your Savior to be great and honorable, because you are not willing to be beholden to a mean person? And, is not Christ a person honorable enough to be worthy that you should be dependent on him? Is he not a person high enough to be appointed to so honorable a work as your salvation? Would you not only have a Savior of high degree, but would you have him, notwithstanding his exaltation and dignity, to be made also of low degree, that he might have experience of afflictions and trials, that he might learn by the things that he has suffered, to pity them that suffer and are tempted?"

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