Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Christ's Great Love for Us - A Puritan Reading

He was despised and rejected by men. Isaiah 53:3

Christ's love made him willing to suffer for us. He suffered all the misery that our sin deserved. He who caused the vast fabric of heaven and earth to start out of nothing, King of kings and Lord of lords, was content to take upon him the form of a servant. He was willing to be accounted as 'a worm, and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised of the people' (Psa 22:6-7). He who was the object of eternal praises was, out of love for us, reviled and slandered as a drunkard, a glutton, a blasphemer, a mad-man, and possessed with the devil. He in whose presence was fullness of joy, was for the love of us, willing to become 'a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief'. This love made God willing to be made a curse, to be sold as a slave, and the Lord of life to die a base, accursed, and cruel death. There was no sorrow like your sorrow, no love like your love. Was it not enough, dearest Saviour, that you were willing to pray, and sigh, and weep for us perishing wretches? Will you also bleed and die for us? Was it not enough that you were hated, slandered, blasphemed, buffeted, but you were also scourged, nailed, wounded, and crucified? Was it not enough to feel the cruelty of man? Would you also undergo the wrath of God? Was it not enough to die once, but to also taste the second death and suffer the pains of death in body and soul? O the transcendent love of Christ! Heaven and earth are astonished at it. What tongue can express it? What heart can conceive it? The tongues, the thoughts of men and angels are far below it. O the height and depth and breadth and length of the love of Christ! Our thoughts are swallowed up in this depth, and there we must be content till glory shall enable us to have no other employment but to praise, admire and adore this love of Christ.

David Clarkson, Works, III:12-14 as quoted in Voices from the Past: Puritan Devotional Readings, Edited by Richard Rushing, Banner of Truth Trust, 2011, Page36

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