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“Jesus Christ is like the white of an egg, tasteless in the world’s mouth.”

-Samuel Rutherford (1600-1661)

Secondly, propitiation is not a turning of the wrath of God into love. The propitiation of the divine wrath, effected in the expiatory work of Christ, is the provision of God’s eternal and unchangeable love, so that through the propitiation of his own wrath that love may realize its purpose in a way that is consonant with and to the glory of the dictates of his holiness. It is one thing to say that the wrathful God is made loving. That would be entirely false. It is another thing to say the wrathful God is loving. That is profoundly true. But it is also true that the wrath by which he is wrathful is propitiated through the cross. This propitiation is the fruit of the divine love that provided it. “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (I John 4:10). The propitiation is the ground upon which the divine love operates and the channel through which it flows in achieving its end.”

-John Murray, Redemption Accomplished & Applied

“The thing above all else to be remembered is that, according to all the Gospels – Synoptics no less than John, Mark no less than Matthew and Luke – Jesus was a supernatural Person. On that view it was inevitable that an atmosphere of mystery should envelop Him. It would be unnatural to expect that the career of such a Person should unfold itself smoothly and transparently, that there should be no riddles, no problems, no apparent contradictions. And a certain amount of secrecy might also reasonably be expected. The privacy of the supernatural, its tendency to withdraw from the glare of public exposure must be taken into account. . . [even] from a purely literary point of view, is it not likely that Mark, writing the life of such a Person, should have taken pains to introduce something of the chiaroscuro in which the supernatural is [accustomed] to veil itself?”

-Geerhardus Vos, The Self-Disclosure of Jesus, p. 69

 

 

Weisskunig

 

Un sermón del Pastor Luis Morales sobre el Salmo 2:1.

 

“You will hear people say, ‘The early Christians believed that Christ was the son of a virgin, but we know that this is a scientific impossibility’. Such people seem to have an idea that belief in miracles arose at a period when men were so ignorant of the course of nature that they did not perceive a miracle to be contrary to it. A moment’s thought shows this to be nonsense: and the story of the Virgin Birth is a particularly striking example. When St Joseph discovered that his fiancée was going to have a baby, he not unnaturally decided to repudiate her. Why? Because he knew just as well as any modern gynaecologist that in the ordinary course of nature women do not have babies unless they have lain with men. No doubt the modern gynaecologist knows several things about birth and begetting which St Joseph did not know. But those things do not concern the main point–that a virgin birth is contrary to the course of nature. And St Joseph obviously knew that. In any sense in which it is true to say now, ‘The thing is scientifically impossible’, he would have said the same: the thing always was, and was always known to be, impossible unless the regular processes of nature were, in this particular case, being over-ruled or supplemented by something from beyond nature. When St Joseph finally accepted the view that his fiancée’s pregnancy was due not to unchastity but to a miracle, he accepted the miracle as something contrary to the known order of nature. All records of miracles teach the same thing.”

-C. S. Lewis, On Miracles

444px-Benjamin_Breckinridge_Warfield“The work which He came to do was a work ordained in the counsels of eternity, and in all its items prepared for beforehand with the most perfect prevision. In addressing Himself to the accomplishment of this work Jesus proceeded from the beginning in the fullest knowledge of the end, and with the most absolute adjustment of every step to its attainment. It is from this double view-point that each of the Evangelists depicts the course of our Lord’s life on earth. They consequently represent Him as having come to perform a specific task, all the elements of which were not only determined beforehand in the plan of God, but adumbrated, if somewhat sporadically, yet with sufficient fulness for the end in view, in the prophecies of the OT. And they represent Him as coming to perform this task with a clear consciousness of its nature and a competent control of all the means for its discharge, so that His whole life was a conscientious fulfilment of a programme, and moved straight to its mark. The conception of foresight thus dominates the whole Evangelical narrative.”

-B. B. Warfield

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Beautiful_tree_at_Akershus_Fortress_(Akershus_Festning)_(29252416734).jpg“This tree is my everlasting salvation. It is my food, a shared banquet. Its roots and the spread of its branches are my own roots and extension. In its shade, as in a breeze, I luxuriate and am cared for. Its shade I take for my resting place; in my flight from oppressive heat it is a source of refreshing dew for me. Its blossoms are my own, my utter delight its fruits, saved from the beginning for my harvest. Food for my hunger and well-spring for my thirst, it is also a covering for my nakedness, with the spirit of life as its leaves. Far from me henceforth the fig leaves!

“Fearful of God, I find it a place of safety; when unsteady, a source of stability. In the face of a struggle, I look to it as a prize; in victory, my trophy. It is the narrow path, the restricted road. It is Jacob’s ladder, the passage of angels, at whose summit the Lord is affixed.  This tree, the plant of immortality, rears from earth to reach as high as heaven, fixing the Lord between heaven and earth. It is the foundation and stabilizer of the universe, undergirding the world that we inhabit. It is the binding force of the world and holds together all the varieties that human life encompasses. It is riveted into a unity by the invisible bonds of the Spirit, so that its connection with God can never be severed.

“Brushing heaven with its uppermost branches, it remains fixed in the earth and, between the two points, its huge hands completely enfold the stirring of the air. As a single whole it penetrates all things and all places.”

-Pseudo-Hippolytus (tr. by B. Ramsay)

A tremendous story about a radical, Lebanese Muslim finding Jesus – and becoming a conservative Lutheran pastor to boot! I was struck by the close similarities he drew between the works righteousness of Islam and the old Roman bondage from which Luther was set free.  “By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph. 2:8-9).

golden-wheat-field-1354390133xGa“When our Savior speaks to us concerning what constitutes our true blessedness He is simply describing His own experience. The beatitudes are not the immediate revelation of His Godhead, they are much more the impressive testimony of His manhood. He knew the truth of what He was saying because He had verified it all in Himself for thirty experimental years.”

-quoted by Alexander Whyte

* * *

The Beatitudes

 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

– Matthew 5:2-12

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