John Flavel (17th Century)
In the following, John Flavel laments the ineptitude of even the greatest scholars to display Christ in a manner worthy of Him:
“But let me tell you, the whole world is not a theatre large enough to shew the glory of Christ upon, or unfold the one half of the unsearchable riches that lie hid in Him. These things will be far better understood, and spoken of in heaven, by the noon-day divinity, in which the immediately illuminated assembly do there preach His praises, than by such a stammering tongue, and scribbling pen as mine, which doth but mar them. Alas! I write His praises but by moon-light; I cannot praise Him so much as by halves. Indeed, no tongue but His own is sufficient to undertake that task. What shall I say of Christ? The excelling glory of that object dazzles all apprehension, swallows up all expression. When we have borrowed metaphors from every creature that hath any excellency or lovely property in it, till we have stripped the whole creation bare of all its ornaments, and clothed Christ with all that glory; when we have even worn out our tongues, in ascribing praises to Him, alas! we have done nothing, when all is done.”
In spite of certain failure, I must both write and speak, for “woe is me if I do not preach the gospel” (I Corinthians 9:16). Thus, being torn between my impotence to expound the gospel and my absolute necessity to do so, I commend this work to Christ’s church collectively and to the believer individually.
(John Flavel, The Works of John Flavel, Vol.1, p.xviii)
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Paul Washer is founder of the HeartCry Missionary Society.
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Paul is the founder of HeartCry Missionary Society and currently serves as its missions director. He also ministered as a missionary in Peru for ten years. He has preached hundreds of sermons and has authored a dozen published works. Paul lives in Radford, Virginia, with his wife Charo and their four children: Ian, Evan, Rowan, and Bronwyn.More By Paul David Washer