Tuesday, January 01, 2008

What God Is Doing For Us

This post and the one below are excerpts by Jeremy Taylor. It comes from a chapter on Judgment Day, and the parts I drew from speak to our assistance from God and the second, he gives us insights on the terrors of facing God without a redeemer.

"I shall draw a short scheme, which, although it needs be infinitely short, of what God hath done for us, yet it will be enough to shame us. God did not only give his Son for an example, and the Son gave himself for a price for us, but both gave the Holy Spirit to assist us in mighty graces, for the verification of faith, and the entertainments of hope, and the increase and the perseverance of charity. God gave to us a new nature, he put another principle into us, a third part of a perfective constitution; we have the Spirit put into us, to be a part of us, as properly to produce actions of a holy life, as the soul of man in the body does produce the natural. God hath exalted human nature, and made it in the person of Jesus Christ, to sit above the highest seat of angles, and the angels are made ministering spirits, ever since their Lord became our brother. Christ hath by a miraculous sacrament given us his body to eat and his blood to drink, he made ways that we may become all one with him. He hath given us an easy religion, and hath established our future happiness upon natural and pleasant conditions, and we are to be happy hereafter if we allow God to make us happy here; and things are so ordered that a man must take more pains to perish than to be happy. God hath found rare ways to make our prayers acceptable, our weak petitions, the desires of our imperfect souls, to prevail mightily with God.
Add to this account that God did heap blessings upon us without order, infinitely, perpetually, and in all instances, when we needed and when we needed not. He heard us when we prayed, giving us all, and giving us more, than we desired. He desires that we should ask, and yet he hath also prevented our desires. He watched for us, and at his own charge sent a whole order of men whose employment is to minister to our souls; and if all this had not been enough, he had given us more also. He promised heaven to our obedience, a province for a dish of water, a kingdom for a prayer, satisfaction for desiring it, grace for receiving, and more grace for accepting and using the first. He invited us with gracious words and perfect entertainments; he bears our charges; he is always beforehand with us in every act of favor, and perpetually slow in striking, and his arrows are unfeathered; and he is so long, first, in drawing his sword, and another long while in whetting it, and yet longer in lifting his hand to strike, that before the blow comes the man hath repented long, unless he be a fool and impudent; and then God is so glad of an excuse to lay his anger aside, that certainly, if after all this, we refuse life and glory, there is no more to be said; this plain story will condemn us; but the story is very much longer; and, as our conscience will represent all our sins to us, so the Judge will represent all his Father’s kindnesses, as Nathan did to David, when he was to make the justice of the divine sentence appear against him.

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