The Incredible Condescension of the Divine Summons to Peace

“Man ought surely not to hear the least report of this peace, without being directly carried with the greatest vigour of soul, to obtain it for himself. And though he should be obliged to go to the utmost end of the earth, for instruction in the manner how to procure it, he should undertake the journey with the utmost diligence and readiness. But behold the incredible benevolence of the Deity, who not only in his word sufficiently instructs men in the excellency of so great a blessing, but also fully informs them in what manner they may enjoy it, by putting the word of reconciliation in the mouth of his servants, 2 Cor. v. 29. “I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the Lord,” Isa. lvii. 19. But this is not all, for he also is the first who sends ambassadors to men to offer peace. Would it not have been inestimable grace, if, after many and solicitous entreaties, he had suffered himself to be at length prevailed upon by us, as Herod, who with difficulty granted peace to the Tyrians after their most earnest requests? See Acts xii. 20. But he not only freely offers, but also solicits and affectionately entreats and beseeches men by his ambassadors, that they would not refuse to be reconciled to him, 2 Cor. v. 20. And though his tremendous majesty has been often scornfully despised, and though he has for a long time addressed himself to their ears by his most alluring invitations, and all to no purpose; yet he does not desist, but again and again presses, over and over urges that affair of peace, and compels with so much gentleness the most obstinate to partake of his friendship and love, Luke xiv. 23. Such is the infinite goodness of the Supreme Being!”[1]

1. Witsius, Herman. The Economy of the Covenants between God and Man: Comprehending a Complete Body of Divinity. Translated by William Crookshank. Phillipsburg, New Jersey: P&R Publishing, 1990, Volume 1, pages 430-431.

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