I haven’t posted anything for a while, but I’ve just started re-reading George Marsden’s biography of Jonathan Edwards, and I thought I’d put up one of Marsden’s quotes regarding Edwards, and then one of Marsden on Edwards, so first the Edwards quote (reflecting on his experience at around the age of 17):
And as I was walking there, and looked up on the sky and the clouds; there came into my mind, a sweet sense of the glorious majesty and grace of God, that I knew not how to express… …in a sweet conjunction: majesty and meekness joined together: it was a sweet and gentle, and holy majesty; and also a majestic meekness; an awful sweetness; a high, and great, and holy gentleness.
Marsden comments a little later on
In fact, it was only when Jonathan’s vision expanded to appreciate that the triune God who controlled this vast universe must be ineffably good, beautiful and loving beyond human comprehension that he could lose himself in God.
I’m looking forward to re-reading more. I don’t think it is necessary to agree with every detail of how Edwards understood God’s sovereignty to appreciate his desire to relate everything back to God, and in particular God’s extravagent, overflowing love for his creation that means God is always seeking to share himself with his creatures and draw them into his life.
Edwards has a God-centredness and God-saturatedness that we need in our day. God has joined together majesty and meekness, gentleness and majesty, holiness and love. We must not separate them out to fit our agendas – or anyone elses.