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John Calvin – The Word Became Flesh

24 Dec

[Commenting on John 1:14: And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth]

Flesh. This word expresses his meaning more forcibly than if the evangelist had said that Christ was made man. He wanted to show to what a low and abject state the Son of God descended from the height of his heavenly glory, for our sake. When Scripture speaks of man derogatorily it calls him “flesh.” How great is the distance between the spiritual glory of the Word of God and the stinking filth of our flesh! Yet the Son of God stooped so low that he took on himself that flesh which is subject to so many miseries… The Word born of God before all ages, and always dwelling with the Father, became man.

~John Calvin~

John (Wheaton, IL; Crossway Books; 1994) Commentary on John 1:14.

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J.C. Ryle – Striking Examples of Faith

23 Dec

These verses [Matt. 2:1-12] show us a striking example of faith. These wise men believed in Christ when they had never seen him; but that was not all. They believed in him when the scribes and Pharisees were unbelieving; but that again was not all. They believed in him when they saw him as a little infant on Mary’s knees, and worshiped him as King. This was the crowning point of their faith. They saw no miracles to convince them. They heard no teaching to persuade them. They saw nothing but a newborn infant, helpless and weak, needing a mother’s care like any of us. And yet when they saw that infant, they believed that they saw the divine Savior of the world! “They bowed down and worshiped him” (v. 11).

We read of no greater faith than this in the whole volume of the Bible. It is a faith that deserves to be placed side by side with that of the penitent thief. The thief saw someone dying the death of a criminal, and yet prayed to him, and “called him Lord.” The wise men saw a newborn baby on the lap of a poor woman, and yet worshiped him, and confessed that he was Christ. Blessed indeed are those who can believe in this way!

~J.C. Ryle~

Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus (Wheaton, IL; Crossway Books; 2008) p. 112-113. Excerpted from Matthew: Expository Thoughts on the Gospels

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Augustine – The Word Was God

22 Dec

He [Jesus, the Word of God] “was” before his own flesh; he created his own mother. He chose her in whom he should be conceived, he created her of whom he should be created. Why marvellest thou? It is God of whom I am speaking to thee: “the Word was God.”


Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus (Wheaton, IL; Crossway Books, 2008) p. 67. Adapted from St. Augustine: Homilies on the Gospel of John; Sermon LXIX

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Charles Spurgeon – Room for the Savior

21 Dec

As the palace, and the forum, and the inn, have no room for Christ, and as the places of public resort have none, have you room for Christ?

“Well,” says one, “I have room for him, but I am not worthy that he should come to me.” Ah! I did not ask about worthiness; have you room for him? “Oh! but I feel it is a place not at all fit for Christ!” Nor was the manger a place fit for him, and yet there was he laid. “Oh! but I have been such a sinner; I feel as if my heart had been a den of beasts and devils!” Well, the manger had been a place where beasts had fed. Have you room for him? Never mind what the past has been; he can forget and forgive. It mattereth not what even the present state may be if thou mournest it. If thou hast but room for Christ he will come and be thy guest.

Do not say, I pray you, “I hope I shall have room for him”; the time is come that he shall be born; Mary cannot wait months and years. Oh! sinner, if thou hast room for him let him be born in thy soul today. “Today if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation . . .” (Heb. 3:7–8). “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Cor. 6:2). Room for Jesus! Room for Jesus now!….

My Master wants room! Room for him! Room for him! I, his herald, cry aloud, Room for the Savior! Room! Here is my royal Master—have you room for him? Here is the Son of God made flesh—have you room for him? Here is he who can forgive all sin—have you room for him? Here is he who can take you up out of the horrible pit and out of the miry clay—have you room for him? Here is he who when he cometh in will never go out again, but abide with you forever to make your heart a heaven of joy and bliss for you—have you room for him?

’Tis all I ask. Your emptiness, your nothingness, your want of feeling, your want of goodness, your want of grace—all these will be but room for him. Have you room for him? Oh! Spirit of God, lead many to say, “Yes, my heart is ready.” Ah! then he will come and dwell with you.

~Charles Spurgeon~

Come Thou Long Expected Jesus (Wheaton, IL; Crossway Books; 2008) p. 63-64. Excerpted from a sermon titled: “No Room for Christ in the Inn” given on December 21, 1862.

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Martyn Lloyd-Jones – The Supreme Example of God’s Faithfulness

20 Dec

The incarnation is the supreme example of fulfilled prophecy, the supreme example of God’s faithfulness to his promises…. What God did when he sent his Son into the world is an absolute guarantee that he will do everything he has ever promised to do. Look at it in personal sense: “All things work together for good to them that love God”—that is a promise—“to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28, KJV). “But how can I know that is true for me?” asks someone. The answer is the incarnation. God has given the final proof that all his promises are sure, that he is faithful to everything he has ever said. So that promise is sure for you. Whatever your state or condition may be, whatever may happen to you, he has said, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Heb. 13:5, KJV)—and he will not. He has said so, and we have absolute proof that he fulfills his promises. He does not always do it immediately in the way that we think. No, no! But he does it! And he will never fail to do it.

~Martyn Lloyd-Jones~

Come Thou Long Expected Jesus (Wheaton, IL; Crossway Books; 2000) p. 47-48

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George Whitefield – Think of the Love of Jesus Christ This Season

19 Dec

Let me now conclude, my dear brethren, with a few words of exhortation, beseeching you to think of the love of the Lord Jesus Christ. Did Jesus come into the world to save us from death, and shall we spend no part of our time in conversing about our dear Jesus; shall we pay no regard to the birth of him who came to redeem us from the worst of slavery, from that of sin, and the devil; and shall this Jesus not only be born on our account, but likewise die in our stead, and yet shall we be unmindful of him? Shall we spend our time in those things which are offensive to him? Shall we not rather do all we can to promote his glory and act according to his command?

O my dear brethren, be found in the ways of God; let us not disturb our dear Redeemer by any irregular proceedings; and let me beseech you to strive to love, fear, honor, and obey him, more than ever you have done yet; let not the devil engross your time, and that dear Savior who came into the world on your accounts have so little. O be not so ungrateful to him who has been so kind to you! What could the Lord Jesus Christ have done for you more than he has? Then do not abuse his mercy, but let your time be spent in thinking and talking of the love of Jesus, who was incarnate for us, who was born of a woman, and made under the law, to redeem us from the wrath to come.

~George Whitefield~

Come Thou Long Expected Jesus (Wheaton, Illinois; Crossway Books; 2008) p. 14-15.
Excerpted from Select Sermons of George Whitefield; Sermon 16: The Observation of the Birth of Christ, the Duty of All Christians

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