“For the Creator to make the creature was a great thing. But for Him to become a creature was a greater thing. And He did a much greater thing still to obtain this joy in that for this He laid down His life and suffered even the death of the cross.
For this He poured out His soul unto death, and He that is the Lord of the universe, God over all, blessed for evermore, offered Himself a sacrifice, in both body and soul, in the flames of divine wrath.
Christ obtains His elect spouse by conquest: for she was a captive in the hands of dreadful enemies and her Redeemer came into the world to conquer these enemies and rescue her out of their hands that she might be His bride.
And He came and encountered these enemies in the greatest battle that ever was beheld by men or angels. He fought with principalities and powers. He fought alone with the powers of darkness and all the armies of hell. Yea He conflicted with the infinitely more dreadful wrath of God and overcame in this great battle.
And thus He obtained His spouse. Let us consider at how great a price Christ purchased this spouse: He did not redeem her with corruptible things as silver and gold, but with His own precious blood. Yea He gave Himself for her.
When He offered up Himself to God in those extreme labors and sufferings this was the joy that was set before Him that made him cheerfully to endure the cross and despise the pain and shame.”
–Jonathan Edwards, “The Church’s Marriage To Her Sons, And To Her God,” in The Works of Jonathan Edwards, Vol. 25, Sermons and Discourses 1743-1758. Ed. Wilson H. Kimnach (WJE Online Vol. 25), 187-188.