06 February 2012

While We Were Still Sinners

Edwards, preaching on Romans 5:8 to the Stockbridge Indians in February 1752, 260 years ago this month:
Christ loved us when there was no loveliness to draw his love. There was nothing attractive in us. All was repulsive. We had nothing amiable or any way desirable in us. All was abominable to his pure eyes.

But Christ has infinite loveliness to win and draw our love. He is the brightness of God's glory. He is the bright and morning star in the spiritual firmament.

He is more excellent than the angels of heaven. He is among them for amiable and divine beauty, as the sun is among the stars. In beholding his beauty, the angels do day and night entertain and feast their souls and in celebrating of it do they continually employ their praises. Nor yet have the songs of angels ever declared all the excellency of Jesus Christ, for it is beyond their songs and beyond the thoughts of those bright intelligencies to reach it. That blessed society above has been continually employed in this work of meditating on and describing the beauty and amiableness of the Son of God, but they have never yet nor ever will comprehend it fully or declare it.
--Jonathan Edwards, 'The Dying Love of Christ,' in The Blessing of God: Previously Unpublished Sermons of Jonathan Edwards (ed. M. McMullen; B&H, 2003), 292