Friday, 2 January 2009

The Resolutions of Jonathan Edwards: Introduction

I will be reading one or two of the resolutions of Jonathan Edwards each week from now on, and post it here, and comment on them whenever I find necessary. I plan to have this series running throughout the year and finish all his 70 resolutions by the end of this year. Hope you find this series helpful as much as I find them so.

My source will be from this website called A Puritan Mind. You can also go to the for the same document.

Being a Christian, of course, Jonathan Edwards naturally acknowledges that he is not able to do anything without God's help, and here is the preamble to his resolutions.

Being sensible that I am unable to do anything without God's help, I do humbly entreat him by his grace to enable me to keep these Resolutions, so far as they are agreeable to his will, for Christ's sake.

Three brief comments regarding this.
First, he asks God to enable him by grace to keep these resolutions. We would do well to remember this always too, that God must work in us in order for us to produce anything good.
Secondly, he acknowledges that his mind and will, even his conscious decision towards God and his great understanding is not necessarily always going to be consistent with God's will, hence he adds the condition that God would enable him to keep these resolutions as long as they are consistent with God's will. I hope we will not fall into humanistic arrogance of assuming that our best will always be consistent with God's will.
Thirdly, he asks for God's grace to keep the resolutions for Christ's sake. Here is an evidence of Edwards' Christ-centredness. Because of Jesus, and for Jesus, he is asking God's help. It would be foolish to ask God for anything, even for those seemingly good and godly petitions, for any reason, except for Jesus' sake.

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