October 17, 2006

Stephen Charnock (1628–1680) on the Redeemer's Voluntary Suffering

4. How willingly then should we part with our sins for Christ, and do our duty to him! Oh that we could in our measures part as willingly with our lusts as he did with his blood! He parted with his blood when he needed not, and shall not we with our sins, when we ought to do so for our own safety, as well as for his glory? Since Christ came to redeem us from the slavery of the devil, and strike off the chains of captivity, he that will remain in them, when Christ with so much pains and affection hath shed his blood to unloose them, prefers the devil and sin before a Saviour, and will find the affront to be aggravated by the Redeemer’s voluntariness in suffering for his liberty. How willingly should we obey him, who so willingly obeyed God for us!
Stephen Charnock, “The Voluntariness of Christ’s Death,” in The Works of Stephen Charnock (Edinburgh: Banner of Truth, 1985), 4:551.

Notice that Charnock is including unbelievers in his exhortation, and he says that Christ shed his blood to unloose them, with so much pain and affection. Some for whom Christ died may remain in their sins, which means Christ shed his blood for the non-elect as well.


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