Tag Archives: Glorification

“The church shall swim in the ocean of His love” by Jonathan Edwards

“Christ rejoices over His saints as the bridegroom over the bride at all times. But there are some seasons wherein He doth so more especially…

The time wherein this mutual rejoicing of Christ and His saints will be in its perfection, is the time of the saints’ glorification with Christ in heaven.

For that is the proper time of the saints’ entering in with the bridegroom into the marriage (Matt. 25:10). The saint’s conversion is rather like the betrothing of the intended bride to her bridegroom before they come together.

But the time of the saint’s glorification is the time when that shall be fulfilled in Psalm 45:15, ‘With gladness and rejoicing shall they be brought; they shall enter into the king’s palace.’

That is the time when those that Christ loved, and gave Himself for, that He might sanctify and cleanse them, as with the washing of water by the word, shall be presented to Him in glory, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing.

That is the time wherein the church shall be brought to the full enjoyment of her bridegroom, having all tears wiped away from her eyes. And there shall be no more distance or absence.

She shall then be brought to the entertainments of an eternal wedding feast, and to dwell eternally with her bridegroom; yea to dwell eternally in His embraces.

Then Christ will give her His love, and she shall drink her fill, yea she shall swim in the ocean of His love.”

–Jonathan Edwards, “The Church’s Marriage to Her Sons, and to Her God,” in The Works of Jonathan Edwards, Sermons and Discourses, 1743–1758, Vol. 25, Ed. Wilson H. Kimnach and Harry S. Stout (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006), 25: 181–182.

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“Grace is glory begun and glory is grace consummated” by Francis Turretin

“Works can be considered in three ways: either with reference to justification or sanctification or glorification.

They are related to justification not antecedently, efficiently and meritoriously, but consequently and declaratively.

They are related to sanctification constitutively because they constitute and promote it.

They are related to glorification antecedently and ordinatively because they are related to it as the means to the end; yea, as the beginning to the complement because grace is glory begun, as glory is grace consummated.”

–Francis Turretin, Institutes of Elenctic Theology, (17.3.15). Ed. James Dennison (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R, 1692/1996), 2:705.

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“It will be morning” by C.S. Lewis

“What we have been told is how we men can be drawn into Christ– can become part of that wonderful present which the young Prince of the universe wants to offer to His Father– that present which is Himself and therefore us in Him.

It is the only thing we were made for. And there are strange, exciting hints in the Bible that when we are drawn in, a great many other things in Nature will begin to come right.

The bad dream will be over: it will be morning.”

–C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (New York: Harper Collins, 1952/2001), 200.

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“The deep things of God” by Charles Spurgeon

“We shall gaze awhile upon the glory which awaits us. We shall say a little—and oh, how little it will be—upon that glory of which we have so sure a prospect, that glory which is prepared for us in Christ Jesus, and of which He is the hope!

I pray that our eyes may be strengthened that we may see the heavenly light, and that our ears may be opened to hear sweet voices from the better land.

As for me, I cannot say that I will speak of the glory, but I will try to stammer about it. For the best language to which a man can reach concerning glory must be a mere stammering.

Paul did but see a little of it for a short time, and he confessed that he heard things that it was not lawful for a man to utter. And I doubt not that he felt utterly nonplussed as to describing what he had seen.

Though a great master of language, yet for once he was overpowered. The grandeur of his theme made him silent. As for us, what can we do, where even Paul breaks down?

Pray, dear friends, that the Spirit of glory may rest upon you, that He may open your eyes to see as much as can at present be seen of the heritage of the saints.

We are told that ‘eye hath not seen, neither hath ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him.’ Yet the eye has seen wonderful things.

There are sunrises and sunsets, Alpine glories and ocean marvels which, once seen, cling to our memories throughout life. Yet even when nature is at her best she cannot give us an idea of the supernatural glory which God has prepared for His people.

The ear has heard sweet harmonies. Have we not enjoyed music which has thrilled us? Have we not listened to speech which has seemed to make our hearts dance within us?

And yet no melody of harp nor charm of oratory can ever raise us to a conception of the glory which God hath laid up for them that love Him. As for the heart of man, what strange things have entered it!

Men have exhibited fair fictions, woven in the loom of fancy, which have made the eyes to sparkle with their beauty and brightness; imagination has revelled and rioted in its own fantastic creations, roaming among islands of silver and mountains of gold, or swimming in seas of wine and rivers of milk.

But imagination has never been able to open the gate of pearl which shuts in the city of our God.

No, it hath not yet entered the heart of man. Yet the text goes on to say, ‘but He hath revealed it unto us by His Spirit.’ So that heaven is not an utterly unknown region, not altogether an inner brightness shut in with walls of impenetrable darkness.

God hath revealed joys which He has prepared for His beloved; but mark you, even though they be revealed of the Spirit, yet it is no common unveiling, and the reason that it is made known at all is ascribed to the fact that the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.’

So we see that the glory which awaits the saints is ranked among the deep things of God, and he that would speak thereof after the manner of the oracles of God must have much heavenly teaching.

It is easy to chatter according to human fancy, but if we would follow the sure teaching of the word of God we shall have need to be taught of the Holy Spirit, without whose anointing the deep things of God must be hidden from us.

Pray that we may be under that teaching while we dwell upon this theme.”

–Charles H. Spurgeon, “Glory!” in The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit Sermons, vol. 29 (London: Passmore & Alabaster, 1883), 277–278.

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“His grip on us is unbreakable” by Marcus Peter Johnson

“The gospel is full of inconceivably extravagant promises from our Father. He has given these promises to provide His children with the full assurance of His freely given, irrevocable love, and they are grounded in His steadfast, immovable, unchangeable faithfulness.

What God promises He will infallibly bring to pass. And all the promises the Father makes are bound up inextricably in Jesus Christ, in whom they are fulfilled and completed: ‘For no matter how many promises God has made, they are ‘Yes’ in Christ’ (2 Cor. 1:20, niv1984).

In order to bring to fruition all that He has promised us, God joins us indissolubly to the One in whom all the promises are contained, fulfilled, and secured. It is only in Christ that we benefit from any of God’s lavish pledges.

Thus, the assurance believers have that God will infallibly save them, and that they will never cease to be saved, is rooted in their being joined to the Savior. The Father gives us to the Son, and it is the Father’s will that the Son save us to the uttermost:

‘And this is the will of Him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that He has given me, but raise it up on the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in Him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day’ ( John 6:39–40).

Our separation from Jesus Christ would mean nothing less than the failure of the Son to accomplish the Father’s will. Once joined to Christ, believers will never be separated from Him.

This is not because our grasp on Christ is so strong, but because His grip on us is unbreakable. We are not only perfectly and eternally preserved in Christ because His grasp is insuperable, but, should we need even greater assurance, Jesus tells us that His hold on us is undergirded by the invincible grasp of His Father:

‘I give [my sheep] eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one’ ( John 10:28–30).

The Son and the Father have a common and mutually re-enforcing grasp on those who belong to them. Indeed, we can say more: our preservation in Christ is anchored in the personal relations and purposes of the Father, Son, and Spirit.

The Father gives us to His Son through His Spirit or, alternatively, the Spirit joins us to the Son, and through the Son to the Father (John 14:16–20). Only a breach in the common unity and will of the triune Godhead could sever us from Jesus Christ.”

–Marcus Peter Johnson, One With Christ: An Evangelical Theology of Salvation (Wheaton: Crossway, 2013), 173-174.

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“Grace is the seed of glory” by John Newton

“The Lord claims the honour; and He engages for the accomplishment of a complete salvation, that no power shall pluck His people out of His hand, or separate them from His love.

Their perseverance in grace, besides being asserted in many express promises, may be proved with the fullest evidence from the unchangeableness of God, the intercession of Christ, the union which subsists between Him and His people, and from the principle of spiritual life He has implanted in their hearts, which in its own nature is connected with everlasting life; for grace is the seed of glory.

I have not room to enlarge on these particulars, but refer you to the following texts, from which various strong and invincible arguments might be drawn for their confirmation: Luke 14:28–30, compared with Phil. 1:6; Heb. 7:25, with Rom. 8:34–39; John 14:19, with John 15:1, 2; John 4:14.

Upon these grounds, my friend, why may not you, who have fled for refuge to the hope set before you, and committed your soul to Jesus, rejoice in His salvation and say:

‘While Christ is the foundation, root, head, and husband of His people, while the word of God is Yea and Amen, while the counsels of God are unchangeable, while we have a Mediator and High Priest before the throne, while the Holy Spirit is willing and able to bear witness to the truths of the Gospel, while God is wiser than men, and stronger than Satan, so long the believer in Jesus is and shall be safe. Heaven and earth must pass away; but the promise, the oath, the blood, on which my soul relies, affords me a security which can never fail.’

As the doctrines of election and perseverance are comfortable, so they cut off all pretence of boasting and self-dependence when they are truly received in the heart, and therefore tend to exalt the Saviour. Of course they stain the pride of all human glory, and leave us nothing to glory in but the Lord.

The more we are convinced of our utter depravity and inability from first to last, the more excellent will Jesus appear. The whole may give the physician a good word, but the sick alone know how to prize him. And here I cannot but remark a difference between those who have nothing to trust to but free grace, and those who ascribe a little at least to some good disposition and ability in man.

We assent to whatever they enforce from the word of God on the subject of sanctification. We acknowledge its importance, its excellency, its beauty; but we could wish they would join more with us in exalting the Redeemer’s name.

Their experience seems to lead them to talk of themselves, of the change that is wrought in them, and the much that depends upon their own watchfulness and striving. We likewise would be thankful if we could perceive a change wrought in us by the power of grace; we desire to be found watching likewise.

But when our hopes are most alive, it is less from a view of the imperfect beginnings of grace in our hearts, than from an apprehension of Him who is our all in all. His person, His love, His sufferings, His intercession, His compassion, His fulness, and His faithfulness,—these are our delightful themes, which leave us little leisure, when in our best frames, to speak of ourselves.

How do our hearts soften, and our eyes melt, when we feel some liberty in thinking and speaking of Him! For we had no help in time past, nor can have any in time to come, but from Him alone.

If any persons have contributed a mite to their own salvation, it was more than we could do. If any were obedient and faithful to the first calls and impressions of His Spirit, it was not our case. If any were prepared to receive Him beforehand, we know that we were in a state of alienation from Him.

We needed sovereign, irresistible grace to save us, or we had been lost forever. If there are any who have a power of their own, we must confess ourselves poorer than they are.

We cannot watch, unless He watches with us; we cannot strive, unless He strives with us; we cannot stand one moment, unless He holds us up; and we believe we must perish after all, unless His faithfulness is engaged to keep us.

But this we trust He will do, not for our righteousness, but for His own name’s sake, and because, having loved us with an everlasting love, He has been pleased in lovingkindness to draw us to Himself, and to be found of us when we sought Him not.”

–John Newton, “Letter IX: On the Doctrine of Election and Final Perseverance,” in The Works of the John Newton, Volume 1, Ed. Richard Cecil (London: Hamilton, Adams & Co., 1824), 191-192.

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“Christ is our pattern” by Richard Sibbes

“Christ is our pattern. It is first in our head, first in Christ, and then in us. He is first the Son of God by nature. We are the sons of God by adoption. He is the predestinated Son of God to save us, to be our head. We are predestined to be His members. He is the Son of God’s love. We are beloved in Him.

He is full of grace: ‘Of His fulness we receive grace for grace,’ (John 1:16). He rose and we shall rise, because He rose first. He ascended into heaven; by virtue of His ascension we shall ascend into heaven too.

He sits at the right hand of God in glory, and by virtue of His sitting we sit there together with Him in heavenly places. Whatsoever is graciously or gloriously good that is in us, it is first in our blessed and glorious Saviour.

Therefore let us look to Him, and be thankful to God for Him. When we thank God for ourselves, let us thank God first for giving Christ, who is the pattern to whom we are conformed. Let us give thanks for Him, as St Peter doth, ‘Blessed be God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,’ (1 Peter 1:3).

If He had not been His Father, He would have not been ours. We cannot stand before God of ourselves, but in one that is perfect in Himself, God-man. Therefore when we bless God for grace and glory that belongs to us, let us bless Him for giving Christ, that in Him we are happy.

He conforms us in grace here and in glory hereafter, in body and soul, to our glorious Saviour. And as it is a ground of thankfulness to God for Christ, so it yields us a rule for meditation.

When we would think of anything in ourselves, let us go to our head, to Christ, in Whom we have all we have and that we hope to have. ‘Of His fulness we receive, not only grace for grace,’ but glory for glory.

Of all the glory He hath, we have answerable to Him; and surely it is a transforming meditation to think of Christ’s glory, and to see ourselves in Him; to think of grace in Christ, and of our interest in grace in Him.

We must not think of Him as an abstracted head severed from us, but think of His glory, and our glory in Him and by Him. He is glorious, and we shall be glorious likewise.”

–Richard Sibbes, “The Redemption of our Bodies,” in The Complete Works of Richard Sibbes, Volume 5, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart (Edinburgh; London; Dublin: James Nichol; James Nisbet and Co.; W. Robertson, 1863), 166.

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