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Jonathan Edwards – God, the Fountain of Spiritual Light

26 Dec

The souls of natural men are so blinded that they see no beauty or excellency in Christ. They do not see his sufficiency. They see no beauty in the work of salvation by him; and as long as they remain thus blind, it is impossible that they should close with Christ. The heart will never be drawn to an unknown Saviour. It is impossible that a man should love that, and freely choose that, and rejoice in that, in which he sees no excellency. But if your eyes were opened to see the excellency of Christ, the work would be done. You would immediately believe on him; and you would find your heart going after him. It would be impossible to keep it back. But take heed that you do not entertain a wrong notion of what it is, spiritually to see Christ. If you do, you may seek that which God never bestows. Do not think that spiritually to see Christ, is to have a vision of him as the prophets had, to see him in some bodily shape, to see the features of his countenance. Do not pray or seek for any such thing as this. But what you are to seek is, that you may have a sight of the glorious excellency of Christ, and of the way of salvation through him, in your heart. This is a spiritual sight of Christ. This is that for which you must cry to God day and night. God is the fountain of spiritual light. He opens the eyes of the blind. He commands the light to shine out of darkness. It is easy with God to enlighten the soul, and fill it with these glorious discoveries, though it is beyond the power of men and angels.

~Jonathan Edwards~

The Works of Jonathan Edwards Vol. 2 (Peabody, MA; Hendrickson Publishers, Inc; 2007) p. 829. Occasional Sermons – Sermon 1.

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John Owen – Struggle Gives Evidence of Life

1 Oct

Believers have experience of the power and efficacy of indwelling sin. They find it in themselves; they find it as a law. It has a self-evidencing efficacy to them that are alive to discern it. They that find not its power are under its dominion. Whosoever [would] contend against it shall know and find that it is present with them, that it is powerful in them. He shall find the stream to be strong who swims against it, though he who rolls along with it be insensible of it.

~John Owen~

Overcoming Sin & Temptation – Indwelling Sin (Wheaton, IL; Crossway Books; 2006) p.235. Part 1, Chapter 1: The Nature of Indwelling Sin. eBook.

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John Flavel – The Regenerated Heart

29 Sep

Man, by the apostasy, has become a most disordered and rebellious creature, opposing his Maker, as the First Cause—by self-dependence; as the Chief Good—by self- love; as the Highest Lord—by self-will; and as the Last End—by self-seeking. Thus he is quite disordered, and all his actions are irregular. But by regeneration the disordered soul is set right; this great change being, as the Scripture expresses it, the renovation of the soul after the image of God—in which self-dependence is removed by faith; self-love is removed by the love of God; self-will is removed by subjection and obedience to the will of God; and self-seeking is removed by self-denial. The darkened understanding is illuminated, the refractory will sweetly subdued, the rebellious appetite gradually conquered. Thus the soul which sin had universally depraved, is by grace restored.

~John Flavel~

Keeping the Heart (Portland, Oregon;; 2010) eBook. Section: What is Keeping the Heart?

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