Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Nature of True Virtue

“The Nature of
True Virtue"

Your Weekly
Exposure to Edwards

Gospel Driven Disciples posts some highlights from the prolific works of Jonathan Edwards. The following excerpt is taken from “A Dissertation on the Nature of True Virtue” in The Works of Jonathan Edwards.

“But now abideth…love.” (I Corinthians 13:13)

Whatever controversies and variety of opinions there are about the nature of virtue, yet all mean by it something beautiful, or rather some kind of beauty or excellency.

It is not all beauty that is called virtue; for instance, not the beauty of a building, but some beauty belonging to beings that have perception and will.

It is not all beauty of mankind that is called virtue; for instance, not the external beauty of the countenance – but it is a beauty that has its original seat in the mind. Yet, perhaps not everything that may be called a beauty of mind is properly called virtue. There is a beauty of understanding and speculation.

But virtue is the beauty of those qualities and acts of the mind that are of a moral nature, i.e., such as are attended with desert or worthiness of praise or blame. Things of this sort belong to the disposition and will, or the heart.

Therefore, I shall not depart from the common opinion when I say that virtue is the beauty of the qualities and exercises of the heart, or those actions which proceed from them. So then when it is inquired what it is which renders any habit, disposition, or exercise of the heart truly beautiful, what I mean by true virtue is that which belongs to the heart of any intelligent being.

It is plain by the Holy Scriptures that virtue most essentially consists in love.

3 comments:

THE OLD GEEZER said...

Virtue
by George Herbert

Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright,
The bridal of the earth and sky,
The dew shall weep thy fall tonight;
For thou must die.

Sweet rose, whose hue angry and brave
Bids the rash gazer wipe his eye,
Thy root is ever in its grave,
And thou must die.

Sweet spring, full of sweet days and roses,
A box where sweets compacted lie,
My music shows ye have your closes,
And all must die.

Only a sweet and virtuous soul,
Like seasoned timber, never gives;
But though the whole world turn to coal,
Then chiefly lives.

WELCOME TO MY WORLD OF POETRY: said...

Hello, I personally think that virtue comes from within, beauty for instance , one may not be handsome or pretty but helping people in need can make one very beautiful, beauty as the adage say is only skin deep.

Thanks for joining my band of followers , there is always a warm welcome.

Yvonne.

Brian Ray Todd said...

Jonathan Edwards explores the possibilities for us, to engage our minds in spiritual sight and thought. We try so hard, sometimes, to come to an intellectual answer when the holiness of the heart is the answer, by the leading of the Holy Spirit. The knowledge of spiritual truths are not learned on our own, but freely given to the children of God. May our heart turn towards our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, our strength and our Redeemer.