"Ver. 4. ή] "or," in case thou dost not thus imagine, "dost thou despise," etc. The particle introduces a new case. πλούτου is emphatic by collocation. It is a frequent word with St. Paul: not a Hebraism, but a common term for abundance. Plato (Euthyphro, 12) speaks of πλούτος της σοφίυς. χρηστότητος] "goodness," in the sense of good-will, or kindness: not the attribute by which God is good (holiness), but by which he does good (benevolence). It is a general term, under which άνοχή and μακροφυμία are species. For the meaning of these, see comment on iii. 25. καταθρονεις] the contempt is in the disregard of the tendency of the divine goodness to produce repentance. άγνοων "not recognizing." The word implies an action of the will along with that of the understanding. It is that culpable ignorance which results: 1. from not reflecting upon the truth; and 2. from an aversion to the repentance which the truth is fitted to produce. It is the "willing ignorance" spoken of in 2 Pet. iii. 5. Compare also the use of άγνοειν in Acts xvii. 23; Rom. x. 3. μετάνοιάν] sorrow for, and turning from, the sins that have been mentioned, and charged home. άγει] the present tense denotes the natural tendency and influence of the divine attribute of goodness. The context shows that this tendency was resisted and thwarted. The apostle is not speaking, here, of the effectual operation of special grace upon the human will, but only of common influences."
November 10, 2013
November 7, 2013
"Use 2. Believe in this Mercy, Psal. 52. 8. I trust in the mercy of God for ever. God's Mercy is a Fountain of Salvation, what greater Encouragement to believe than God's Mercy. God counts it his glory to be scattering Pardons; he is desirous that sinners should touch the golden Scepter of his Mercy, and live. And this willingness to shew Mercy appears two ways:
1. By his intreating of sinners to come and lay hold on his Mercy; Rev. 22.17. Whosoever will, come and take the water of life freely. Mercy woes sinners, it even kneels down to them. It were strange for a Prince to entreat a condemned Man to accept Pardon. God saith, poor sinner, suffer me to love thee, be willing to let me save thee.
2. By his joyfulness when sinners do lay hold on his Mercy. What is God the better, whether we receive his Mercy or no? What is the Fountain profited that others drink of it? Yet such is God's goodness, that he rejoyceth at the Salvation of sinners, and is glad when his Mercy is accepted of. When the Prodigal Son came home, how glad was the Father? and he makes a Feast to express his joy. This was but a Type or Emblem, to shew how God rejoyceth when a poor sinner comes in, and lays hold of his Mercy. What an encouragement is here to believe in God, he is a God of Pardons, Nehem. 9.17. Mercy pleaseth him, Micha 7.18. Nothing doth prejudice us but Unbelief. Unbelief stops the current of God's Mercy from running: It shuts up God's Bowels, closeth the Orifice of Christ's Wounds, that no healing Vertue will come out, Matth. 13.58. He could not do mighty works there because of their unbelief. What dost thou not believe in God's Mercy? Is it they sins discourage? God's Mercy can pardon great sins, nay, because they are great, Psal. 25.11. The Sea covers great Rocks as well as lesser Sands; some that had an hand in crucifying Christ, found Mercy. As far as the Heavens are above the Earth so far is God's Mercy above our sins, Isa. 55.9. What will tempt us to believe, if not the Mercy of God?"
Thomas Watson, A Body of Practical Divinity (London: Printed for Thomas Parkhurst, at the Bible and Three Crowns in Cheapside, near Mercers-Chappel, 1692), 55.
"4. To Sin presumptuously, to know what is good, yet not to do it, is hainous, because it is Ingratitude: 'Tis an high Abuse of God's Kindness; and God cannot endure, or all Things, to have his Kindness abused. God's Kindness is seen in this, that he hath acquainted the Sinner with his Mind and Will; that he hath not only instructed him, but perswade him, made mercy stoop and kneel to the Sinner; he hath Wooed him with his Spirit, that he would flee from Sin, and pursue Holiness: Kindness is seen in this, that God hath spared the Sinner so long, and not struck him dead in the Act of Sin: Kindness in this, that tho' the Sinner hath sinn'd against his Conscience, yet now, if he will repent of Sin, God will repent of his Judgments, and the white Flag of Mercy shall be held forth, Jer. 3.1. Thou hast played the Harlot with many Lovers; yet return again to me, said the Lord. But the Sinner is of a base morose Spirit; he is not melted with all his Love; but his Heart, like Clay, hardens under the Sun. Here's an apparent Abuse of God's Kindness; and God cannot endure to have his Kindness abused. The Vulture draws Sickness from Perfumes; so the Sinner contracts Wickedness from the Mercy of God. Here's high Ingratitude!"
November 2, 2013
"The only point which he [Thomas Pierce] names here, is, That the Primate [James Ussher] embraced the doctrine of universal redemption, and saith, in that he doth as good as say all, He [Pierce] doth not assert it from his own knowledge, but saith he hath it from many most unquestionable persons which had it poured into their ears, by the Primate's own mouth. If it were in a Sermon of his [Ussher's] at the Church in London, the last he preached in that City, and many months before his death, (which I am informed by others is the sense of it) I was present at it, and with me there was no new thing observed to have been uttered by him differing from what his judgment was many years agone, since I had the happiness to be known unto him. It may be some of these persons produced for witnesses being strangers to him and taking him to be of the other extremity might apprehend it as a retractation, but they were much mistaken in it; If they heard him affirming, That by the death of Christ all men receive this benefit that they are Salvabiles, or put into a capacity and possibility of salvation, That terms of peace are procured for all mankind, That all men's sins are become pardonable, mercy attainable, (in which state those of the Angelical nature which fell, are not), That there is some distinction to be made between his satisfaction (rightly understood) and his intercession, according to that of our Saviour, I pray for these, I pray not for the world, &c. It is possible, for ought I know, some such expressions might be his then. But that by his Universal Redemption should be understood such an Universal grace, that the same measure of it without any distinction should equally and alike be conferred and applied to Judas, which was to Peter; and that the only difference was the free-will of Peter in accepting, without any further cause of thanks to God for his grace in inclining him accordingly, &c. This I suppose will not be attested to have been professed by him, either in this or any other Sermon, or private conference with him. And in this present enlargement, I would not be understood to interpose myself in the controversy, or to affix thus much upon Mr. Pierce's judgment, but only to aver that the Primate at his last in this particular differed not from what he had declared formerly."
October 14, 2013
W. Robert Godfrey, Tensions within International Calvinism: The Debate on the Atonement at the Synod of Dort, 1618-1619 (Ph.D. Dissertation, Stanford University, 1974), 252-264.
Path to Compromise
This sensitivity [for Protestant unity concerning Reformed relations with Lutheranism] did not move the strict group, however. The strict German and Swiss delegations through bitter experience had already been disillusioned about hopes of concord with Lutherans. The Dutch provincial delegations had other reasons for disregarding an appeal to Lutheranism. They read such an appeal in the context of their own struggles with the Remonstrants and construed the call to Protestant unity as another Remonstrant smoke screen designed to obscure the real issues. This fear seemed to be supported because as early as 1609 defenders of Arminius had claimed that their teachings were no different from what was taught by Lutherans on the matters at hand. On January 16, 1619 the Remonstrants wrote to Maurice asking for toleration if they could not support the decrees of the Synod. Brandt summarized this letter: ". . . they humbly pray'd that the same freedom might be allowed to them which the Lutherans had enjoy'd in these Provinces, and who were of the same opinion themselves, in the business of the Five Points, and who moreover differed from the Reformed in other matters." Brandt also noted the appeal of March 19, 1619 that the Remonstrants made to the political delegates at the Synod when they submitted the last of their written defense:
Observe then how inconsistently they act with themselves; they who in Germany call Melanchthon, a most pious Soul, and cry him up for his extraordinary virtues and gifts of all kinds (as Zanchius and all the Palatine Divines are wont to do) yet here in the Low-Countries will not so much as admit, either to the exercise of their Ministry, or to the Table of the Lord, one who practices Melanchthon's moderate way of preaching, and who, for the sake of peace, is contented to forbear meddling with the doctrines of the Contraremonstrants.
Although the strict Calvinist group at the Synod was not moved by an appeal to Lutheran feelings, there were three grounds upon which an effective appeal for compromise might succeed with them. In fact, the final compromise was accomplished on the basis of these appeals. The first plea was the need for the decisions of the Synod to be approved unanimously. The second appeal was the form in which final Canons were to be stated, and the third was the need to placate the English delegation that represented the largest Reformed church and was the strongest political ally of the United Provinces. On the basis of these three considerations, the strict group was willing to compromise.
On the matter of unanimity, the Provincial delegations, especially, were sensitive to the charge of vindictiveness and revenge that could easily be raised against them in their judgment of the Remonstrants. To refute this charge the foreign delegations had been invited in the first place. The Provincial delegates were especially eager for a unanimous vote at the Synod to condemn the Remonstrants. They wanted the world to see that Calvinists from all over Europe were united in maintaining the Contra-Remonstrant case. Bogerman verbalized something of that concern when he spoke against Davenant's request to have the various Judicia read publically. Bogerman reasoned, as Balcanqual reported:
. . . Though the suffrages of all Colledges do agree . . . in the thing itself; yet because there was some disagreement in phrases and forms of speaking, it was to be feared that the Remonstrants and other Jesuits and Dominicans present would make a great matter of these verbal differences, that they would cast abroad among the people strange reports of the dissensions of the Synod.
Bogerman's reasoning was supported by a majority vote of the Synod reflecting the great concern on this issue. Samuel Ward further testified to this concern in writing some years later to Archbishop Ussher:
Some of us were held by some half Remonstrants for extending the oblation made to the Father to all, and for holding sundry effects thereof offered serio, and some really communicated to the reprobate. . . . We were careful that nothing should be defined which might gainsay the Confession of the Church of England, which was effected, for that they were desirous to have all things in the Canons defined unanimi consensu.
The second ground of compromise was the form in which Bogerman, supported by Bishop Carleton, chose to express the Canons. At the same time when the decisions on the form of the Canons were being made, Balcanqual worried that each Contra-Remonstrant minister would want his particular theological insight to be stated explicitly in the Canons.
. . . if your L. care do not now most of all show it self for procuring of good counsel to be sent hither for the constitution of the Canons, we are like to make the Synod a thing to be laughed at in after ages. The President and his provincials have no care of the credit of strangers, nor of that account which we must yield at our return unto all men that shall be pleased to call for it; their Canons they would have them so full charged with catechetical speculations, as they will be ready to burst, and I perceive it plainly, that there is never a contra-Remonstrant minister in the Synod, that hath delivered any doctrine which hath been excepted against by the Remonstrants, but they would have it in by head and shoulders in some Canon, that so they might have something to show for that which they have said.
Balcanqual's worries were no doubt justified in relation to the Provincials, but it seems probable that Balcanqual misunderstood Bogerman. Bogerman's biographer has shown that he was not so fanatical as has sometimes been thought and that he was chosen President because of his familiarity with the issues, his stability, and his friendship with Maurice and Count William Louis.
Bogerman decided that the Canons were to be formed for the edification of the Dutch church, not to settle subtle academic questions. Bishop Carleton agreed that the style of the Canons should be popular and not scholastic. This decision meant that the many of the specific problems and differences could be ignored. The Canons would be framed with these theses stating the orthodox belief followed by the rejection of specific heterodox beliefs. It meant that with a little ambiguity and flexibility a compromise could be reached.
The commission that Bogerman appointed to write the Canons arrived at a compromise without much trouble. Only on the Second Article did a problem arise, and on the Second Article a last minute addition on the absolute necessity of Christ's death delayed final approval, but even that issue was finally resolved.
Balcanqual expressed satisfaction with the results of the compromise, and implicitly recognized the influenced wielded by the English at the Synod as Europe's largest Reformed Church and as the Netherlands' most powerful ally.
The Deputies appointed by the Synod have taken pains I must needs confess to give our Colledge all satisfaction; besides the second Article, some of our Colledge have been earnest to have this proposition out. (Infideles damnabuntur non solum ob infidelitatem, sed etiam ob omnia alia peccata sua tam originale quam actualia.) Because they say that from thence may be inferred that original sin is not remitted to all who are baptized, which opinion hath been by more than one council condemned as heretical: they have therefore at their request put it out; so I know now of no matter of disagreement among us worthy the speaking of. . . .
Ambassador Carleton in his letter to the King after the Synod also testified to the significant influence of the English delegation:
This day I presented my lord bishop of Landaff, and the rest of your majesty's commissioners, who have assisted at the Synod, to the states and the prince of Orange, to take their leaves: by both which I was desired to acknowledge to your majesty the full satisfaction they have had in these reverend persons, and their great obligation for the favour, they sparing not to publish in their open assembly, that this synod (which hath given, as it were, a new soul and life to this state) is your majesty's work; and thereupon to profess to owe to your majesty the fruits of their best abilities in all occasions for the service of your person and kingdoms: which I do now undertake in their behalf, to be as really meant, as freely tendered. . . .
While the notion that the Synod was "his majesty's work" must be discounted to some extent as courtly flattery, it was certainly true that the English had an immense impact on the Synod as a whole and on the Second Article in particular. Davenant emerged as the most articulate spokesman for the moderate position, and Bishop Carleton emerged as the great compromiser. Ambassador Carleton emerged in Balcanqual's letters as the ready source of political pressure on the Dutch, when it appeared from time to time that the strict and uncompromising group might dominate the Synod.
The final form of the Canons on the Second Article indicated the ways in which the tension between unity and division were finally resolved and an acceptable compromise reached. The Second Head of Doctrine was composed of nine theses or canons stating the orthodox position on the death of Christ. These canons were followed by a list of seven errors which were rejected. The theses and rejected errors may be summarized as follows: 1) God's justice requires the infinite punishment of sin. 2) Christ satisfied for our sins in our place. 3) Christ's death is of infinite value and sufficient for the sins of the whole world. 4) Christ's death is of infinite value because Christ was not only perfectly man but also truly God. 5) Whoever believes in Christ will have eternal life, and this promise and the command to repent and believe should be preached to all persons indiscriminately. 6) The reason that some do not believe and therefore are not saved is not due to any deficiency in the death of Christ, but is their own responsibility. 7) Those who do believe owe all their salvation to Christ's merit and nothing to their own merit. 8) God willed that Christ's death would effectively redeem only the elect and that only to the elect would he give faith and all other saving gifts. 9) This will of God always has been and always will be accomplished. The Canons rejected seven specific errors: 1) Christ died without a certain decree to save anyone. 2) Christ died only to make a new covenant possible. 3) Christ died so that God could choose new conditions for salvation and those conditions can be fulfilled by the free will of man. (This error is labeled Pelagian.) 4) Salvation is the result of faith itself, not of the applied merits of Christ. (This is labeled Socinian.) 5) By the death of Christ all men are freed from original sin and received into grace. 6) The distinction between application and accomplishment makes salvation dependent on the will of man. (This is labeled Pelagian.) 7) Christ did not die for those whom God loved as elect since they would have no need for such a death.
These Theses were quite different from any of the Theses proposed by the various delegations, although some similarity existed between the final Canons and the Theses proposed by the Dutch professors. Canons Three and Four were similar to Thesis One of the Dutch professors; Canon Five resembled Thesis Three, and Canon Eight reflected Thesis Five. All but two of the errors rejected in the official Canons were mentioned by the Dutch professors in their Theses. Approximately half of the final Canons may have reflected the work of the Dutch professors. The methodology of the Canons was quite different, however, from that of the Dutch professors. Dijk expressed this difference well in his general observations on the First Article: ". . . men niet aprioristisch van het decreet Gods uitging, maar aposteriorisch van de historische feiten. . . ." Whereas most of the Theses began with God's intention in sending Christ to die, the Canons began with man's need for salvation and the way in which Christ met that need.
This a posteriori approach made compromise possible, and the compromise expressed the concerns of both the strict and the moderate groups at the Synod. Canons Eight and Nine reflected the strict and mediating insistence that God sovereignly applies to the elect the salvation which he accomplished in Christ. Since the vast majority of the Synod was either strict or mediating in their positions on the Second Article, it was hardly surprising that this ringing statement on God's sovereignty was included. What was surprising was the degree to which the concerns of the moderates were represented in the Canons. Especially Davenant's concerns reflected in his Dissertation were met by these Canons.
The first sign of Davenant's impact was the extended treatment of what Davenant called 'mere sufficiency.' Far from ignoring sufficiency completely, as Beza seemed to prefer and as the Genevan delegates actually did in their Theses, the final form of Canons Three and Four spoke at length about the infinite value of the death of Christ. The second aspect of Davenant's influence was reflected in the silence of the Canons on the question of the 'ordained sufficiency.' The Canons contained neither an affirmation nor a rejection of this concept. This seemed to be a clear compromise designed so both moderates and strict Reformed could be satisfied on this point. The third mark of Davenant's thought was the extended statement in Canon Five on the need to communicate he Gospel to all. This statement again reflected the moderate, 'catholic' concern so absent in the Genevan Theses. The compromise rested in the fact that while there was a clear declaration of the necessity to preach the Gospel to all, there was no theological connection drawn between universal preaching and the death of Christ. The moderates and the strict were left free to their own opinions about the foundation for the universal offer of the Gospel.
The Canons of the Synod of Dort were accepted by all the delegates and represented a triumph of compromise for the international Reformed community. The evaluation given by Walter Rex on the Synod appropriately emphasized the significance of the compromise.
Dordrecht has come to signify all that was backward and rigid in Calvinism, and the Synod does in fact represent a narrowing of orthodox territory insofar as Arminianism was concerned. If one studies the Canons in connection with the separate opinions of the delegates, one finds far more flexibility than has been commonly supposed. There was still room in orthodoxy for a certain individuality and a limited spirit of compromise.____________________
44. Van Itterzon, op. cit., pp. 159-165.
45. Brandt, The History of the Reformation . . ., III, 212.
46. Ibid., III, 260. In a letter of June 18, 1619 Carleton indicated that the Remonstrants were still using this appeal for toleration. Carleton expressed concerns very much like those of DuMoulin in charging that the Remonstrants were innovators in the Church and disturbers of the state: "For howsoever the Arminians alledge, that the liberty of this country in matters of religion should be no more straitned unto them than unto the Lutherans and Anabaptists, who have their meetings and preachings by public permission; yet it is not so understood by the state; first, in regard that the Lutherans and Anabaptists are no innovators, but began and continued with the beginning and increase of this state. Next, because they have been always content to live peaceably and under the protection of this state: Whereas the Arminians by a factious conspiracy did aim at the sovereignty. Lastly, because it appears by the new levies of men here in Holland and Utrecht made by the Arminians, and their rigorous proceedings against those, who were well-affected in religion, their end was to breed a mutation both in church and state, which was never attempted either by Lutherans or Anabaptists." Carleton to Nauton, Carleton, op. cit., pp. 372-373.
47. Hales, op. cit., Appendix, p. 18, March 9, 1619.
48. Fuller, op. cit., p. 90.
49. Hales, op. cit., Appendix, p. 35, March 25, 1619.
50. H. Edema van der Tuuk, Johannes Bogerman (Gronigen, 1868), pp. 185-186.
51. Dijk, op. cit., p. 170 and Van Itterzon, loc. cit., pp. 274-275.
52. See Brandt, The History of the Reformation . . ., III, 282. Also, Balcanqual reported the exact nature of the debate on the absolute necessity of the death of Christ in his final report, Hales, op. cit., Appendix, pp. 38-39. He made this summary of the matter: ". . .upon Tuesday in the afternoon we had a Session, in which were read the Canons of the first and second Article, and were approved, except the last of the second Article, which we never heard of till that hour, and the second heterodox in that same Article, what they were Dr. Davenant will inform your L. the last was such as I think no man of understanding would ever assent unto. On Thursday morning we had another Session in which was nothing done, but that it was reasoned whither that last heterodox should be retained; our Colledge in that whole Session maintained dispute against the whole Synod; they condemned the thing itself as a thing most curious, and yet would have it retained only to make the Remonstrants odious, though they find the very contrary of that they would father upon them in their words." Hales, op. cit., Appendix, pp. 35-36, April 9/19, 1619.
53. Hales, op. cit., Appendix, p. 34, April 4/14, 1619.
54. Carleton, op. cit., p. 366, May 8, 1619.
55. The Second Article of the Canons is usually called the Second Head of Doctrine. The Canons of the Synod of Dort are printed in Schaff, op. cit., III, 550ff.
56. Dijk, op. cit., p. 172.
57. Rex, op. cit., p. 87.
These delegates to the Synod did not realize that on the question of the extent of the atonement there were dangerous differences of expression and emphasis that would have to be faced and resolved. They did not realize that a wide spectrum of opinions would come to light in the Judicia of the various delegations. This spectrum was grounded in the very history of Reformed theology from the time of Calvin and Beza. This spectrum revealed itself in discussions of the value of the distinction between the sufficiency and the efficiency of the death of Christ. The strictest Calvinists wanted to abandon the distinction, as had Beza, while others felt that a broad definition of the sufficiency of the death of Christ for all was imperative. Ibid., 266.
The history of the Synod when viewed in detail reveals that the Calvinism at Dort was neither irrelevant, monolithic nor uncompromising. The Calvinists at Dort saw that the foundations of Reformed theology and the peace and order of the Dutch Church were at stake in their different theological expressions and methodologies representing very different hopes and fears for the Reformed community. They demonstrated in the final form of the Canons their ability to compromise by defining what was held in common and by remaining silent on what was not. Indeed, the Synod represented the victory of a moderate form of contemporary Calvinism. The moderate infralapsarians, who were a considerable majority at the Synod, triumphed on the First Article. The moderates on the extent of the atonement, who were a considerable minority at the Synod, also triumphed by wresting important concessions from their colleagues. Ibid., 268.
September 3, 2013
"God's virtue in respect of his will are bounty, and justice: Bounty is that, by which out of love, God procureth to every creature the good thereof, and it is common, and particular: common bounty is towards all creatures, even such as offend him, directing them to their natural good, and sustaining them therein, so long as justice suffereth, Luk. 6:36. God cannot hate his creatures, as his works, for so they carry similitude of God, the first cause: and none can hate himself, or his similitude, for a similitude is something of himself. God's bounty to his creatures presupposeth not any debt, or duty, which implyeth imperfection; and if God were bound to his creatures, he should depend on them, and be imperfect.
God's bounty which is infinite, giveth creatures good things, of nature, of soul, and body, and of outward things.
Such is God's bounty, as the creatures suffer no evil, unless God's justice require it, or a greater good confirm it; of this virtue God is called patient, and longsuffering.
Particular, or special bounty, is that whereby God loved some men (in Christ) fallen into sin, and furthereth them to eternal salvation. God's special bounty, is the first beginning, both of salvation, and of the means thereto. This bounty is no inherent quality in us, but we [who] are the object of it, it is a grace making us grateful, not finding us so."
Henry Ainsworth, The Old Orthodox Foundation of Religion (London: Printed by E. Cotes, and are to be sold by Michael Spark at the Blue Bible in Green Arbour, 1653), 16-17.
August 25, 2013
"But [Herman] Hanko speaks for a minority, Dutch, hyper-Calvinistic school, a group hostile to the doctrine of common grace that God loves all men and desires that all be saved."
Erroll Hulse, "Global Revival: Should We Be Involved in Concerts of Prayer?," Reformation and Revival 2:4 (Fall 1993), 29.
"Historically the term hyper-Calvinism has been reserved for the doctrine that the unregenerate are to hear only legal conviction and terrors of judgment from the pulpit, not the free offer of the gospel."
James T. Dennison, Jr., Review of The American Pietism of Cotton Mather: Origins of American Evangelicalism. By Richard F. Lovelace, JETS 25:1 (March 1982), 96.
"A biblical study which demonstrates that the Father’s heart is one of love for all people, especially for His own. A good corrective to the emphasis of newer hyper-Calvinism."
John Armstrong, Review of The Love of God, by John MacArthur, Reformation and Revival 7:2 (Spring 1998), 146.
"Apparently Clark accepts the exegesis of Matt 23:37 as given by John Gill. The verse cited is Jesus’ weeping over Jerusalem. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem…how often would I have gathered thy children…and ye would not!” According to Gill, “How often would I have gathered”, refers to the subjects or disciples of leaders, and “and ye would not” refers to civil and religious leaders (pp. 215f). It does seem to this reviewer that, if this is not forced exegesis, it is a bit overly ingenious. Why not let the verse speak its more natural message and rejoice in this passionate illustration of the sincere offer of the gospel to all men? Mysterious? Certainly; it is the heart of God. There are fragments in this chapter which critics might seize upon as being hyper-Calvinism."
Robert K. Churchill, Review of Religion, Reason and Revealation, by Gordon H. Clark, WTJ 24:2 (May 62), 234.
Bio at OPC
Bio at OPC
August 14, 2013
"6. But here is sad News to such who slight this Salvation, and refuse Jesus Christ, great will their Condemnation be: The Men of Nineveh shall rise up in judgment with this Generation, and condemn it, because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and behold a greater than Jonas is here. The greatness of this Saviour who preaches the Gospel to you, and is come to save you, will aggravate your Condemnation. What was Jonas to Jesus Christ? Also our Saviour saith, The Queen of the South shall rise up in Judgment with this Generation, and shall condemn it; for she came from the uttermost Parts of the Earth to hear the Wisdom of Solomon; and behold a greater than Solomon is here. Solomon was a mighty King, and for Wisdom exceeded all that went before him. But alas, what was Solomon to Jesus Christ, who is the Wisdom of God itself, and the express Image of the Father's Person, and the Brightness of his Glory? O know you, Sinners, this Day, that Jesus Christ, this glorious King, and Prince of the Kings of the Earth, this mighty Saviour is come to your Doors: Behold, I stand at the Door and knock: Will you not open the Door, nor cry to him to help you to open to him, to enable you to believe in him? What do you say, shall the Son of God stand at your Doors, and you not so much as ask, Who is there? Who is at my Door? Shall Christ be kept out of your Hearts, and stand at your Doors, whilst Sin commands the chiefest Room, and has absolute Power over you, and rules in you? How will you be able to look this Blessed Saviour in the Face another Day? Is he come through a Sea of Blood to offer his Love to you, and to espouse you unto himself for ever, and will not you be persuaded to break your League with the old Lovers, who will at last stab you at the very Heart, and betray your Souls into the Hands of Divine Wrath? Nay, they have done it already: What are your Lovers bur your Lusts, your Pride, your Earthly-mindedness, your sinful Pleasures, Profits and Honours? O resolve to desert them, they otherwise will damn your Souls for ever, and expose you to the Torments of Hell-Fire: And to deliver you from them, and from that wrath which is due to you for them, (I mean, for your Sins) is Christ come, and this great Saviour is offered to you. The Lord help every oneof you to consider of this, and to lay it to Heart."
Benjamin Keach, A Golden Mine Opened: Or, The Glory of God's Rich Grace Displayed in the Mediator to Believers: And His Direful Wrath Against Impenitent Sinners. Containing the Substance of Near Forty Sermons Upon Several Subjects (London: Printed, and sold by the Author at his House in Horse lie-down, and William Marshall at the Bible in Newgate-street, 1694), 386-387.