Sunday, January 06, 2008

Wicked Men Be Not Apt to Be Sensible

Jonathan Edwards really had a way with words. Most of us are familiar with the word pictures he painted in his famous sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. I came across another passage nearly as striking in a sermon entitled, Wicked Men Be Not Apt to Be Sensible. It is about how the unsaved rarely think beyond the realities of this present age, much less about their certain impending physical death.
Here is Edwards on death:
They are not wont to dwell in their thoughts upon death, the sinking of nature under the oppressing weight of dying pains, the gradual creeping of cold death upon them, their breaths becoming shorter and shorter, the increasing of the oppression of their vitals together with the decay of strength, till they can fetch their breath no longer, the struggling for life under the last agonies, till nature is even forced to yield, and the lungs cease to perform their office, the pulse of the heart ceases, and the blood stops and no longer continues to circulate, and the frame of the body dissolves, and the union between body and soul is broken and the soul leaves its old habitation, as being no longer fit for its residence and takes its flight into the unseen world of spirits, while pale ghostly death sits upon the face of their corpse and they are laid in the dark and silent grave, and begin to corrupt, and the worms begin to take them till they turn to dust and rise not again till the heavens be no more.

That’s one sentence!

He goes on to say,
And how that after this the places that have known them shall know them no more. Their faces shall no more be seen, their voice no more heard, and the face of the earth shall be forever clear of them.
They don’t consider those things. Though they are so certain and so near, they hardly ever think those things over. They think of other things that have neither the truth part of the certainty nor importance, with a great deal of fixedness, the thoughts of them made impression on their minds, and they are setting their hearts upon those things and plotting and contriving and going about them as if they thought there never was to be an end put to them. Their inward thought is that their houses shall continue forever (Ps. 49:11).



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