March 17, 2009

Jonathan Edwards (1703–1758) on God Begging

Now is the time. Now is a blessed opportunity to escape those everlasting burnings. Now God has again set open the same door, the same fountain, and gives one more happy opportunity for souls to escape. Now he has set open a wide door and he stands in the door way calling and begging with a loud voice to the sinners of Zion. Come, says he, to me. Come, fly from the wrath to come. Here is a refuge for you. Fly hither for refuge. Lay hold on the hope set before you.
Jonathan Edwards [1743], Sermons, Series II, July-December 1740 (WJE Online Vol. 56), ed. Jonathan Edwards Center. [Punctuation, spelling and other corrections/modifications are mine]

Also in Jonathan Edwards, "Sinners in Zion Tenderly Warned," in The Works of Jonathan Edwards, rev. Edward Hickman (Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1992), 2:205 as follows:
Now, now, then, is the time, now is the blessed opportunity to escape those everlasting burnings. Now God hath again set open the same fountain among us, and gives one more happy opportunity for souls to escape. Now he hath set open a wide door, and he stands in the door-way, calling and begging with a loud voice to the sinners of Zion: Come, saith he, come, fly from the wrath to come; here is a refuge for you; fly hither for refuge; lay hold on the hope set before you.
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Jonathan Edwards joins William Gurnall, Stephen Charnock, Thomas Manton, Andrew Gray, Ralph Venning, George Swinnock, John Shower, John Flavel, Samuel Rutherford, and many other Puritans in using this kind of language for God's revealed will. George Whitefield, Thomas Chalmers, Charles Spurgeon and John MacArthur have also used it.

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