“‘The LORD our righteousness.’ (Jer. 23:6)
A soul truly sensible of his own unrighteousness would not have this sentence, ‘The LORD our righteousness,’ blotted out of the Bible for ten thousand thousand worlds.”
“See the amazing love of God in making us His sons.
It is love in God to feed us, but even more to adopt us: ‘Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God!’ (1 John 3:1) It is full of wonder.
The wonder of God’s love in adopting us will appear the more if we consider this: that God should adopt us when He had a Son of His own.
Men adopt because they want children, and desire to have some to bear their name.
But that God should adopt us when He had a Son of His own, the Lord Jesus, here is the wonder of love.
Christ is called ‘God’s dear Son,’ (Col. 1:13); a Son more worthy than the angels, (Heb. 1:4), ‘being made so much better than the angels.’
Now, when God had a Son of His own, such a Son, here is the wonder of God’s love in adopting us:
We needed a Father, but He did not need sons.”
–Thomas Watson, A Body of Divinity Contained in Sermons Upon the Westminster Assembly’s Catechism (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1692/1970), 234-235.
“He had a body of Divinity in his head, and the power of it upon his heart.”
–John Reeve, as quoted in The Works of Thomas Brooks, Volume 1, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1866/2001), xxxvi. Thomas Brooks died at age 72 on September 27, 1680. In his funeral sermon, John Reeve said these words about this “fine old man” and this “faithful minister of Christ.”
“All the mercy in the creature is derived from God, and is but a drop of this ocean. The mercy and pity a mother hath to her child is from God.
God is called, ‘The Father of mercies,’ (2 Cor. 1:3) because He begets all the mercies in the world. If God hath put any kindness into the creature, how much kindness is in Him who is the Father of mercy?
God’s mercy, as it makes the saints happy, so it should make them humble. Mercy is not the fruit of our goodness, but the fruit of God’s goodness.
Mercy is an alms that God bestows. They have no cause to be proud who live upon the alms of God’s mercy. ‘If I be righteous, yet will I not lift up my head,’ (Job 10:15). All my righteousness is the effect of God’s mercy, therefore I will be humble, and will not lift up my head.
Mercy stays the speedy execution of God’s justice. Sinners continually provoke God, and make His fury come up in His face (Ezek. 38:18). Why is it that God does not presently arrest and condemn them? It is not because God cannot do it, for He is armed with omnipotence. It is because of God’s mercy.
Mercy gets a reprieve for the sinner, and stops the speedy process of justice. God would, by His goodness, lead sinners to repentance. It is only mercy that saves the sinner.
I might shew you several species or kinds of mercy: preventing mercy, sparing mercy, supplying mercy, guiding mercy, accepting mercy, healing mercy, quickening mercy, supporting mercy, forgiving mercy, correcting mercy, comforting mercy, delivering mercy, and crowning mercy.
God’s mercy is free. To set up merit is to destroy mercy. Nothing can deserve mercy, because we are polluted in our blood. We may force God to punish us, not to love us: ‘I will love them freely,’ (Hos. 14:4).
Every link in the chain of salvation is wrought and interwoven with free grace.
Election is free: ‘He hath chosen us in Him… according to the good pleasure of His will,’ (Eph. 1:4-5).
Justification is free: ‘Being justified freely by His grace,’ (Rom. 3:24).
Salvation is free: ‘According to His mercy He saved us,’ (Titus 3:5).
Mercy is free. If God should show mercy only to such as are worthy, then He would show none at all.
God’s mercy is an overflowing mercy. It is infinite: ‘Plenteous in mercy,’ (Ps. 86:5); ‘Rich in mercy,’ (Eph. 2:4); ‘Multitude of Thy mercies,’ (Ps. 51:1).
The vial of wrath doth but drop, but the fountain of mercy runs. The sun is not so full of light as God is full of mercy.
God hath morning-mercies: ‘They are new every morning,’ (Lam. 3:23). God hath night-mercies: ‘In the night his song shall be with me,’ (Ps. 42:8).
God hath mercies under heaven, those we taste of; and in heaven, those we hope for.
God’s mercy is eternal: ‘The mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting,’ (Ps. 103:17). It is repeated twenty-six times in one psalm, ‘His mercy endureth forever,’ (Ps. 136).
The souls of the blessed shall be ever bathing themselves in this sweet and pleasant ocean of God’s mercy. God’s anger to His children lasts but a while (Ps. 103:17), but His mercy lasts forever.
As long as He is God He will be shewing mercy. As His mercy is overflowing, so it is everflowing.”
–Thomas Watson, A Body of Divinity Contained in Sermons Upon the Westminster Assembly’s Catechism (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1692/1970), 95-96.
“If God gives His people such joy in this life, oh! then, what glorious joy will He give them in heaven! ‘Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord,’ (Matt. 25:21)
Here joy begins to enter into us. There we shall enter into joy.
God keeps His best wine till last. What joy when the soul shall forever bathe itself in the pure and pleasant fountain of God’s love? What joy to see the brightness of Christ’s face?
Oh! If a cluster of grapes here be so sweet, what will the full vintage be?
How may this set us all a longing for that place where sorrow cannot live, and where joy cannot die!”
–Thomas Watson, A Body of Divinity Contained in Sermons Upon the Westminster Assembly’s Catechism (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1692/1970), 272-273.
“The oil of joy makes the wheels of obedience move faster.
Christ died to purchase this joy for His saints: He was a man of sorrow that we may be full of joy.
He prays that the saints may have this divine joy, ‘And now I come to Thee, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves,’ (John 17:13).
And this prayer He now prays in heaven. He knows we never love Him so much as when we feel His love, which may encourage us to seek after this joy.
We pray for that which Christ Himself is praying for when we pray that His joy may be fulfilled in us.”
–Thomas Watson, A Body of Divinity Contained in Sermons Upon the Westminster Assembly’s Catechism (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1692/1970), 271.