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IMG_0285The following quote will strike our death-insulated, secular, consumerist age as morbid if not cruel. But as death is inescapable, we would do well to learn from a wiser generation and all the more because their eyes were better trained to behold the great beyond. They realized that death was but the gateway into realms of everlasting happiness for the blessed and of misery for the damned. We could use a good ice-water dousing; and frankly, so could our over-stimulated children.

“Children, ’tis your Dawning time. It may be your Dying time…Go unto the Burying-places; There you will see many a Grave shorter than yourselves…Yea, you may be at play one hour; dead, dead the next.”

Cotton Mather (1663 – 1728)

lily_lilium_'citronella'_flower“Reason & natural justice alike move me to give up myself wholly to loving Him to whom I owe all that I have and am. But faith shows me that I should love Him far more than I love myself, as I come to realize that He hath given me not my own life, but even Himself… In the first creation He gave me myself; but in His new creation He gave me Himself, and by that gift restored me to the self that I had lost. Created first and then restored, I owe Him myself twice over in return for myself. But what have I to offer Him for the gift of Himself? Could I multiply myself a thousand-fold and then give Him all, what would that be in comparison with God?”

– Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)

“The espousals are carried on secretly; it may be the person is sitting at your side, and you do not see, nor know when Christ is making up the match; or, perhaps, on his knees at home, there is a secret transaction: but the consummation will be before millions of angels, millions of saints, and millions of spectators.”

-Ralph Erskine (1685-1752)

st_georges_church_graveyard_carrington_greater_manchester“Todo hombre que tiene su esperanza en Cristo, se purifica a sí mismo”. 1 Juan 3: 3. Un sermón de J. C. Ryle (1816-1900)

Suponga por un momento que a usted se le permitiera entrar al cielo sin santidad.  ¿Qué haría?  ¿Cuál sería el  disfrute que usted podría sentir allí?  ¿A cuál de todos los santos usted se uniría y al lado de quién se sentaría?  Sus placeres no son sus placeres, sus gustos no sus gustos, sus caracteres no son su carácter.  ¿Cómo podría usted ser feliz si no ha sido santo en la tierra?

Tal vez ahora usted ama la compañía de los livianos y los descuidados, los mundanos y los codiciosos, el revoltoso y buscador de placeres, el sin dios y el profano.   No habrá ninguno de ellos en el cielo.

Tal vez ahora usted piense que los santos de Dios son muy estrictos y detallistas y serios.  Prefiere evitarlos.  Usted no tiene complacencia en su compañía.   En el cielo no habrá otro tipo de compañía. Read the rest of this entry »

st_georges_church_graveyard_carrington_greater_manchester“Every man who has his hope in Christ, purifies himself.” 1 John 3:3. A sermon by J. C. Ryle (1816-1900)

Suppose for a moment, that you were allowed to enter heaven without holiness. What would you do? What possible enjoyment could you feel there? To which of all the saints would you join yourself—and by whose side would you sit? Their pleasures are not your pleasures, their tastes are not your tastes, their character not your character. How could you possibly be happy in heaven—if you had not been holy on earth?

Now you love the company of the frivolous and careless, the worldly-minded and the covetous, the reveler and the pleasure-seeker, the ungodly and the profane. There will be none such in heaven! Now you think that the people of God are too strict and particular and serious. You rather avoid them. You have no delight in their society. But remember, there will be no other company in heaven. Read the rest of this entry »

St_georges_church_graveyard_Carrington_Greater_ManchesterThe [Apostles’] Creed next mentions, that he “was dead and buried”. Here again it is necessary to consider how he substituted himself in order to pay the price of our redemption. Death held us under its yoke, but he in our place delivered himself into its power, that he might exempt us from it. This the Apostle means when he says, “that he tasted death for every man,” (Heb 2:9). By dying he prevented us from dying; or (which is the same thing) he by his death purchased life for us. But in this he differed from us, that in permitting himself to be overcome of death, it was not so as to be engulfed in its abyss, but rather to annihilate it, as it must otherwise have annihilated us; he did not allow himself to be so subdued by it as to be crushed by its power; he rather laid it prostrate, when it was impending over us, and exulting over us as already overcome. In fine, his object was, “that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage,” (Heb 2:14-15).

-John Calvin

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