Saturday, March 13, 2010

How Wonderful Was The Love...

"Men Naturally God’s Enemies"

Your Weekly Exposure to Edwards

Gospel Driven Disciples posts some highlights from the prolific works of Jonathan Edwards. The following excerpt is taken from “Men Naturally God’s Enemies”, in The Works of Jonathan Edwards

For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son…” (Romans 5:10)

The apostle, from the beginning of the epistle to the beginning of this chapter, has insisted on the doctrine of justification alone. Christ dying for us is here spoken of as a much greater thing than actually bestowing life on two accounts: (1) This is all that has any difficulty in it; (2) when God did this for us, He did it for us as sinners and enemies.

In actually bestowing salvation on us after we are justified, we are not looked upon as sinners, but as perfectly righteous persons. He beholds no iniquity in us. We are no longer enemies, for then we are reconciled. When God gave Christ to die for the elect, He looked on them as they are in themselves; but in actually bestowing eternal life, He does not look on them as they are in themselves, but as they are in Christ.

There are three epithets used in the text as pertaining to sinners as they are in themselves:

They are without strength and cannot help themselves

They are ungodly, or sinners

They are enemies

If natural men are Gods’ enemies, then we may learn how much we are indebted to God for His restraining grace. We may learn how wonderful the love is that is manifested in giving Christ to die for us. For this love is love for enemies.

How wonderful was the love of Christ in exercising dying love for His enemies!


Scott said...

Amen, Amen, Amen.

My appreciation of this precious doctrine "Justification" continues to grow along with my affections for Christ my righteousness.

Brian Ray Todd said...

Gregg, The grace of God is truly amazing. Our salvation was brought with a price - Christ in our place on that cross, while we were still dead in our sins. I always see this clearly articulated by Paul in Ephesians 2:1-5 "As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved." Amazing!