Sunday, February 28, 2010

Just a Few Quotes from J-Ed

These are merely a few of my favorite quotes from Jonathan Edwards' dissertation "The End For Which God Created The World" found in the second half of John Pipers book "God's Passion for His Glory." If you are reading this post, you should go get the book and atleast read the dissertation. It is hard to read, but push through it! Trust me...

"It is reasonable to suppose that God had respect for himself, as his last and highest end, in this work; because he is worthy in himself to be so, being infinitely the greatest and best of beings. All things else, with regard to worthiness, importance, and excellence, are perfectly as nothing in comparison of him....And therefore it must cheifly consist in giving due respect to that Being to whom most is due; for God is infinitely the worthy of regard. The worthiness of others is as nothing to his..."

"A sufficiency for any work is no further valuable than the work itself is valuable...The end of wisdom is design; the end of power is action; the end of goodness is doing good. To suppose these perfections not to be exerted would be to represent them as insignificant. Of what use would God's wisdom be, if it had nothing to design or direct? To what purpose his almightiness, if it never brought any thing to pass? And of what avail his goodness, if it never did any good?"

"The happiness of the creature consists in rejoicing in God, by which also God is magnified and exalted."

"This delight which God has in his creature's happiness cannot properly be said to be what God receives from the creature. For it is only the effect of his own work in and communications to the creature, in making it and admitting it to a participation of his fullness, as the sun receives nothing from the jewel that receives its light and shines only by a participation of its brightness."

"God's esteeming himself supremely is not contrary to his esteeming human happiness, since he is that happiness. In created beings, a regard to self-interest may properly be set in opposition to the public warfare, because the private interest of one person may be inconsistent with the public good; at least it may be so in the apprehension [i.e., perception] of that person. That which this person looks upon as his interest, may interfere with or oppose the general good. Hence his private interest may be regarded and pursued in opposition to the public. But this cannot be with respect to the Supreme Being, the author and head of the whole system, on whom all absolutely depend, who is the fountain of being and good to the whole. It is more absurd to suppose that his interest should be opposite the interest of the universal system, than that the welfare of the head, heart, and vitals of the natural body, should be opposite to the welfare of the body. And it is impossible that God, who is omniscient, should apprehend his interest as being inconsistent with the good and interest of the whole."

"And in communicating his fullness for them, he does it for himself, because their good, which he seeks, is so much in union and communion with himself. God is their good. Thier excellency and happiness is nothing but the emination and expression of God's glory."

"A main difference between the intelligent and moral parts, and the rest of the world, lies in this, that the former are capable of knowing their Creator and the for which he made them, and capapble of actively complying with his design in their creation, and promoting it, while other creatures cannot promote the design of their creation, except passively and eventually."

"Here it cannot be pretended that though Christians are indeed required to make God's glory their end; yet it is but as a subordinate end, as subservient to their own happiness; for then, in acting chiefly and ultimately for their own selves, they would use themselves more as their own than as God's; which is directly contrary to the design of the apostle's exhortation and the argument he is upon; which is, that we should give ourselves as it were away from ourselves to God, and use ourselves as his, and not our own, acting for his sake, and not our own sakes."

"When the church says, 'Not unto us, not unto us, O Jehovah, but to thy name give glory' [Ps. 115:1], it would be absurd to say that she only desires that God may have glory, as a necessary or convenient means of her own advancement and felicity."

Love excites God to create.

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