January 7, 2008

James Janeway (1636–1674) on Common Grace

Thirdly, Because men are so exceeding apt to be mistaken, and to misapprehend concerning themselves, that they are in a state of acquaintance with God, while they are mere strangers unto him; such as those whom our Saviour speaks of, Matt, vii, 22, 23, "Many will say to me in that day, Lord Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?" and then he will profess unto them, "I never knew you: depart from me, ye workers of iniquity." They take it for granted, that because of such privileges, and gifts, and common graces which they had, therefore they were well acquainted with Christ; but our Saviour answereth, "I never knew you;" that is, I never had any acquaintance with you.
James Janeway, Heaven Upon Earth; or, Jesus the Best Friend of Man (London: Thomas Nelson, 1847), 74.

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Janeway was ejected in 1662 for Nonconformity and licensed as a Presbyterian minister in 1672. He died when he was 38.

3 comments:

David Ponter said...
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David Ponter said...

Some other snippets I found:

2) ''According to thy word unto thy servant." And that none might think this to be only God's common kindness that he means, he adds, "Let thy tender -mercies come unto me, that I may live." God's common mercies would 'not serve his turn, that was a dish that the world fed upon as well as he; if he might not have these sweet dainties, peculiar, spiritual, fatherly mercies, he could not live, he should even pine away for hunger. Wherefore lie saith, a little after, that this soul did even faint for God's salvation. And the soul that hath not a full meal here; oh, how is it raised! How doth it cry, Roast meat! “The King hath brought me into his chambers," Cant. i. 4. And what had you there? Nay, that's more than the soul can express; only this she can say, ""The taste of that mercy she hopes to keep in her mouth for ever; she shall remember his love more than wine." Way, so comfortable a Friend is God that those who have an interest in him can rejoice in such times, when others would-be weeping and wringing then 'hands. James Janeway, Heaven Upon Earth; or, Jesus the Best Friend of Man (London: Thomas Nelson, 1847), 90.

3) It is no unusual thing for a child of God to question his state, to fear whether all that he ever did were not in hypocrisy and formality. Have not the best been made sometimes to question (especially upon some notable fall) whether what they did formerly did not proceed from mere common grace or some less spiritual principle than the life of grace and a divine nature within them. James Janeway, Heaven Upon Earth; or, Jesus the Best Friend of Man (London: Thomas Nelson, 1847), 148.

4) And what is the language of all these mercies, but, "Return, backsliding sinner, for in me is thy help found?" Love, delight in, and be acquainted with Him from whom thou hast received so many kindnesses. If thou woudst accept of Him for thy Lord, Husband, and Friend, who hath sent thee these tokens, thou shalt have other favours than these. Is not this the meaning of all the common mercies that we daily receive from him? James Janeway, Heaven Upon Earth; or, Jesus the Best Friend of Man (London: Thomas Nelson, 1847), 151-152.

YnottonY said...

Thanks, David. Some of those pages that you quote contain things pertaining to well-meant offers. I plan on posting many pages from this piece by Janeway. If you have run an OCR scan on it, let me know what you find.