Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Images of Divine Things (3)

Cindy Mercer Photography

The following quotations are from Typological Writings, Vol. 11 of the Works of Jonathan Edwards, edited by Wallace E. Anderson, Mason I. Lowance, Jr., and David Watters (New Haven: Yale, 1993).

3. Roses grow upon briers, which is to signify that all temporal sweets are mix with bitter. But what seems more especially to be meant by it, is that true happiness, the crown of glory, is to be come at in no other way than by bearing Christ’s cross by a life of mortification, self-denial and labor, is the last thing that comes out. The brier prickly bush grows before, but the end and crown of all is the beautiful and fragrant rose.

11. The serpent’s charming of birds and other animals into their mouths, and the spider’s taking of the fly in his snare, are lively representations of the devil’s catching our souls by his temptations.

14. The sun’s so perpetually, for so many ages, sending forth his rays in such vast profusion, without any dimunition of his light and heat, is a bright image of the all-sufficiency and everlastingness of God’s bounty and goodness.

15. And so likewise are rivers which are ever-flowing, that empty vast quantities of water every day and yet there is never the less to come. The Spirit communicated and shed abroad, that is to say, the goodness of God, is in Scripture compared to a river; and the trees that grow and flourish by the river’s side through the benefit of the water, represent the saints who live upon Christ and flourish through the influences of his Spirit.

21. The purity, beauty, sublimity and glory of the visible heaves as one view it in a calm and temperate air, when one is made more sensible of the height of them and of the beauty of their color, when there are here and [there] interposed little clouds, livelily denotes the exaltedness and purity of the blessedness of the heavenly inhabitants. How different is the idea from that which we have in the consideration of the dark and dire caverns and abyss down in the depths of the earth. This teaches us the vast difference between the state of the departed saints and of damned souls: it shows the ineffable glory of the happiness of the one and the unspeakable dolefulness and horrors of the state of the other.

54. As the sun, by rising out of darkness and from under the earth, raises the whole world with him, raises mankind out of their beds, and by his light as it were renews all things and fetches ‘em up out of darkness, so Christ, rising from the grave and from a state of death, he, as the first begotten from the dead, raises all his church with him; Christ the first fruits, and afterwards they that are Christ’s at his coming. And as all the world is enlightened and brought out of darkness by the rising of the sun, so by Christ’s rising we are begotten again to a living hope; and all our happiness and life and light and glory and the restitution of all things is from Christ rising from the dead, and is by his resurrection.

64. Hills and mountains are types of heaven, and often made use of as such in Scripture. These are difficulty ascended. To ascend them, one must go against the natural tendency of the flesh that must be contradicted in all the ascent, in every step of it, and the ascent is attended with labor, sweat and weariness, and there are commonly many hideous rocks in the way. ‘Tis a great deal easier descending into valleys.


Anonymous said...

I confess, Rev. Mercer, that some days I go on line just to see your wife's beautiful work!!!!!!!!!

Bradford Mercer said...

Me too!