Jonathan Edwards… Yet Speaking

Jonathan Edwards… Yet Speaking

You that have hitherto spent your time in the pursuit of satisfaction in the profit or glory of the world, or in the pleasures and vanities of youth, have this day an offer of that excellent and everlasting peace and blessedness, which Christ has purchased with the price of his own blood.
As long as you continue to reject those offers and invitations of Christ, and continue in a Christless condition, you never will enjoy any true peace or comfort; but will be like the prodigal, that in vain endeavoured to be satisfied with the husks that the swine did eat. The wrath of God will abide upon, and misery will attend you, wherever you go, which you never will be able to escape.
Christ gives peace to the most sinful and miserable that come to him. He heals the broken in heart and bindeth up their wounds. But it is impossible that they should have peace, while they continue in their sins. There is no peace between God and them; for, as they have the guilt of sin remaining in their souls, and are under its dominion, so God’s indignation continually burns against them, and therefore they travail in pain all their days.
While you continue in such a state, you live in dreadful uncertainty what will become of you, and in continual danger. When you are in the enjoyment of things most pleasing to you, where your heart is best suited, and most cheerful, yet you are in a state of condemnation. You hang over the infernal pit, with the sword of divine vengeance hanging over your head, having no security one moment from utter and remediless destruction.
What reasonable peace can any one enjoy in such a state as this. What though you clothe him in gorgeous apparel, or set him on a throne, or at a prince’s table, and feed him with the rarest dainties the earth affords? How miserable is the ease and cheerfulness that such have! what a poor kind of comfort and joy is it that such take in their wealth and pleasures for a moment, while they are the prisoners of divine justice, and wretched captives of the devil! They have none to befriend them, being without Christ, aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, strangers from the covenant of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world!
I invite you now to a better portion. There are better things provided for the sinful, miserable children of men. There is a surer comfort and more durable peace: comfort that you may enjoy in a state of safety, and on a sure foundation: a peace and rest that you may enjoy with reason, and with your eyes open.
You may have all your sins forgiven, your greatest and most aggravated transgressions blotted out as a cloud, and buried as in the depths of the sea, that they may never be found more. And being not only forgiven, but accepted to favour, you become the objects of God’s complacency and delight; being taken into God’s family and made his children, you may have good evidence that your names were written on the heart of Christ before the world was made, and that you have an interest in that covenant of grace that is well ordered in all things and sure; wherein is promised no less than life and immortality, an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, a crown of glory that fades not away.
Being in such circumstances, nothing shall be able to prevent your being happy to all eternity; having for the foundation of your hope, that love of God which is from eternity to eternity; and his promise and oath, and his omnipotent power, things infinitely firmer than mountains of brass. The mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed, yea, the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, yet these things will never be abolished.
Jonathan Edwards [1703–58]. The Works of Jonathan Edwards Volume 2, (Banner of Truth, 1974), 92–93. Some paragraphing added.