Thursday, November 20, 2008

Spurgeon on health and sickness

"I dare say the greatest earthly blessing that God can give to any of us is health... with the exception of sickness. If some men that I know of could only be favoured with a month of rheumatism it would be God's grace to mellow them marvellously."

"I'm afraid that all the grace that I have got of all my comfortable and easy times and happy hours might almost lie on a penny but the good that I have received from my sorrows and pains and griefs is altogether incalculable. Affliction is the best bit of furniture in my house. It is the best book in a minister's library."

quoted by John Piper in Charles Spurgeon: Preaching through Adversity,

Monday, November 03, 2008

I Like Committing Crimes

I like committing crimes. God likes forgiving them. Really the world is admirably arranged.

W.H.Auden, For the Time Being (London: Faber & Faber, 1958), p.116 - quoted in Moo, D. NICNT commentary on The Epistle to the Romans, p.356

A striking quote, rhetorically neat, but fundamentally flawed. God's character as just means that his forgiveness is deeper and truer than indulgence or complacency towards evil. And God's provision of grace to hard-nosed rebels is transformative in purpose not a licence to continue. As Paul says,

What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning, so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?
Romans 6.1-2