Quotations A ~ M

Abortion

“To hinder a birth is merely a speedier man-killing; nor does it matter whether you take away a life that is born, or destroy one that is coming to birth. That is a man which is going to be one; you have the fruit already in its seed.” Tertullian, Apology  (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 3:25)

Allegory

“the mere fact that you can allegorise the work before you is of itself no proof that it is an allegory.” C. S. Lewis, cited by Alister McGrath, C. S. Lewis ~ A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2013), p. 277-78

Angels

“They appear from time to time fleetingly on the edge of our earthly existence, and are, as it were, both tangential to the Being of God and tangential to human being.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 229.

“Angels are not sent to indwell us, like the Holy Spirit, and we are not united to them as we are united to Christ through his Spirit, but they are present and active in our midst as God’s agents fulfilling his behests.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 230.

Apologetics

” . . . nothing is more dangerous to one’s own faith than the work of an apologist. No doctrine of that Faith seems to me so spectral, so unreal as one that I have just successfully defended in a public debate.” C. S. Lewis, cited by Alister McGrath, from Lewis’ 1945 lecture “Christian Apologetics” in C. S. Lewis ~ A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2013), p. 258

“A man can’t always be defending the truth; there must be a time to feed on it.” C. S. Lewis, cited by Alister McGrath, from Reflections on the Psalms in C. S. Lewis ~ A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2013), p. 317

Calling

“When Christ calls a man he bids him come and die.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

Christ

“What man is, Christ was willing to be, that man also may be what Christ is.” Cyprian, On the Vanity of Idols (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 5:468)

“Christ is never loved till sin be loathed.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 45.

Christianity

“In sharp contrast with every other religion, Christianity stands for the fact that in Jesus Christ God has communicated to us his Word and has imparted to us his Spirit, so that we may really know him as he is in himself although not apart from his saving activity in history, for what he is toward us and for us in history he is in himself, and what he is in himself he is toward us and for us in  history.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 3.

Confession

“Confession is the beginning of glory, not the full desert of the crown; nor does it perfect our praise, but it initiates our dignity” Cyprian, On the Unity of the Church (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 5:428).

Conversion

“After conversion we need bruising, to let us see that we live by mercy.” Richard Sibbes, quoted in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 104fn.

Covenant Theology

“Covenant theology offers a total view, which is ready to validate from Scripture itself if challenged, as to how the various parts of the Bible stand related to each other.” J.I. Packer, Preface to Herman Witsius’ The Economy of the Covenants Between God and Man: Comprehending a Complete Body of Divinity, Reprint ed. (Kingsburg, CA: den Dulk Foundation, 1990).

Death

“He who is to attain to the throne of Christ, to the glory of the heavenly kingdoms, ought not to mourn or to lament, but rather, in accordance with the Lord’s promise, in accordance with his faith in the truth, to rejoice in this his departure and translation.” Cyprian, On the Mortality (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 5:474).

“The one thing no one else can do for me is die for me.” Martin Heidegger, philosopher

“Everybody has got to die, but I have always believed an exception would be made in my case.” William Saroyan, American Playwright, (died May 18, 1981)

“… always busy, never fussy” British historian, Simon Schama (about the English civil War)

Devotion

“One way of judging the quality of theologies is to see what sort of devotion they produce.” J.I. Packer, Preface to Herman Witsius’ The Economy of the Covenants Between God and Man: Comprehending a Complete Body of Divinity, Reprint ed. (Kingsburg, CA: den Dulk Foundation, 1990).

Economy (as in Economic Trinity)

“The word ‘economy’ (in its theological sense) is the patristic expression, developed from St. Paul, for the orderly movement in which God actively makes himself known to us in his incarnate condescension and his redemptive activity within the structures of space and time, through Christ and in one Spirit, in such a way as to identify and name himself to us as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 92.  

Eternity

“All that is not eternal is eternally out of date.” C. S. Lewis, cited by Alister McGrath, C. S. Lewis ~ A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2013), p. 168

 Faith

“There is no faith without good works and no good works apart from faith.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

Feminist Theology

“In terms of Biblical Theology, one can only hope that Feminist Theology will break out of its identification with liberal Protestant theology, and distinguish ‘the forgotten voices of women’ from those of Schleiermacher and Freud. Would that God would raise up in the new generation of the church’s scholars a Ms Calvin or a Martina Luther!” Brevard S. Childs, Biblical Theology of the Old  and New Testaments: Theological Reflection on the Christian Bible (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1992), p. 24.

Gifts

“It does not appear to me that there is any need of those extraordinary gifts to set up the kingdom of God through the world; I have seen so much of the power of God in a more excellent way, as to convince me that God can easily do it without.” Jonathan Edwards, quoted in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 243.

God

His Constancy

“. . . the constancy of God . . . is his unchanging eternal Life as characterised by time, not of course our kind of time which is the time of finite created being with beginning and end, and past, present and future, but God’s kind of time which is the time of his eternal Life without beginning and end.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 241.

His Love

“Since God is Love, his love can no more cease to be love than God can cease to be God. Like God himself his love is always consistently the same in every change, and yet always new in its free spontaneous outflow unconditioned by anything beyond itself.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 245.

His Fatherhood

“. . . he who calls God Father, by him both remission of sins, and taking away of punishment, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption, and adoption, and inheritance, and brotherhood with the Only-Begotten, and the supply of the Spirit, are acknowledged in this single title.” John Chrysostom, The Gospel of St. Matthew (Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers [Hendrickson], 10:134).

Grace

“Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

“It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin, and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son…. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us.  Costly grace is the incarnation of God.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship 

“Unbelief thrives on cheap grace, for it is determined to persist in disobedience.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

“Grace is free but not cheap. It cost Jesus his life.” Tim J. R. Trumper, passim.

Grief

“God has not been trying an experiment on my faith or love in order to find out their quality. He knew it already. It was I who didn’t.” C. S. Lewis, cited by Alister McGrath, C. S. Lewis ~ A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2013), p. 345

Guidance

“Guidance is often only clear when you take a concrete step in a certain direction.” Walter Trobisch, The Misunderstood Man: Why Men Suffer and What Can Be Done About It (Editions Trobisch, 1987), p. 65.

“The guided man . . . knows that God can write straight on crooked lines. He can even make something good out of our mistakes. His creative will is at work whether we are standing tall or have fallen flat.” Walter Trobisch, The Misunderstood Man: Why Men Suffer and What Can Be Done About It (Editions Trobisch, 1987), p. 67. Use of this quotation does not indicated entire happiness with the phrase God’s “creative will.”

Half-heartedness

“We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered to us. like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday by the sea. We are far too easily pleased.” C. S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory

Heart

“The “heart” is the whole person in all of his or her human activity as a thinking, planning, willing, feeling, worshiping, socially interacting being.” Walter Elwell, “Hardening, Hardness of Heart” in Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1996).

“. . . was there ever an age, wherein there has been so little sense of the evil of sin, so little love to God and heavenly-mindedness, and holiness of life, among the professors of the true religion? Our people do not so much need to have their heads stored as to have their hearts touched, and they stand in the greatest need of that sort of preaching which has the greatest tendency to do this.” Jonathan Edwards in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 127.

Hedonism

“It is the great day of Hedonism in our Western world. A few cars carrying believers home from church are lost in a sea of frantic pursuit of pleasure and wealth.” Walter Chantry, Call the Sabbath a Delight (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1991), p. 11.

History

“Unlike dates, ‘periods’ are not facts. They are retrospective conceptions that we form about past events, useful to focus discussion, but very often leading historical thoughts astray.” C. S. Lewis, cited by Alister McGrath, C. S. Lewis ~ A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2013), p. 316

“History is solid, but without poetry it is dull & in danger of being meaningless; poetry is glorious, but without history, insubstantial. In the gospel of Christ both meet. Only the dullest of pedestrian minds would insist that an event must be either symbolic or historical and cannot be both.” David Gooding, According to Luke: A New Exposition of the Third Gospel, reprint ed. [Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press and Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans], 1988) p. 53.

Hypocrites/Hypocrisy

“None will find it more difficult to repent than hypocrites. They have so juggled in religion that their treacherous hearts know not how to repent.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 69.

Hypotheses

“It is natural for all men, without due investigation, to give instant and easy credit to reports which they ardently wish to be true; and promptly to make use of them, to serve a hypothesis.” Herman Witsius, C17th century continental theologian, The Apostles’ Creed, 2:71

 Idolatry

“The principal crime of the human race, the highest guilt charged upon the world, the whole procuring cause of judgment, is idolatry. For, although each single fault retains its own proper feature, although it is destined to judgment under its own proper name also, yet it is marked off under the general account of idolatry.” Tertullian, On Idolatry (Ante-Nicene Fathers 3:61)

Illumination

“Illumination is susceptible of degrees; inspiration does not admit of them. A prophet is more or less enlightened by God; but what he says is not more or less inspired.” Rene Pache, The Inspiration & Authority of Scripture, paperback edition (Chicago: Moody Press, 1980), p. 55

Joy and Pain

“The pain then is part of the happiness now. That’s the deal.” Joy Gresham to C S Lewis, Shadowlands

“Pain is God’s megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” C S Lewis to Association of Christian Teachers, Shadowlands

 “Life must go on.” “I don’t know whether it must but it does” “We’re the rats in the cosmic laboratory . . . that still makes God the cosmic vivisectionist” C S Lewis after the death of Joy Gresham to colleagues at Oxford, Shadowlands

Law

“There is no fulfilment of the law apart from communion with God, and no communion with God apart from fulfilment of the law.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship 

“Only those who apprehend the law as the word of Christ are in a position to fulfil it.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

Lord’s Day

“The profanation of this day tends to annihilate the blessing sof revelation, to leave the world w/out any visible token of the authority of Christianity, and to strip the Church of the means of openly testifying its faith and obedience.” (Daniel Wilson, The Divine Authority and Perpetual Obligation of the Lord’s Day (London The Lord’s Day Observance Society, 1988), 1. 

Lord’s Supper

” . . . it befits our religion, and our fear, and the place itself, and the office of our priesthood, dearest brother, in mixing and offering the cup of the Lord, to keep the truth of the Lord’s tradition, and on the warning of the Lord, to correct that which seems with some to have been erroneous; so that when He shall begin to come in His brightness and heavenly majesty, He may find that we keep what He admonished us; that we observe what He taught; that we do what He did.” Cyprian, Epistle to Caecilius on the Sacrament of the Cup of the Lord (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 5:363-64).

Love

 “Why love if losing means so much? I have no answers anymore. I have had the choice twice in my life – once as a boy, once as a man. The boy chose safety the man chose suffering.” C S Lewis in the aftermath of the death of Joy Gresham in Shadowlands

“Truth without love is harshness, love without truth is mere sentimentality.” Tim J. R. Trumper, Relational Core Values, Seventh Reformed Church

Man

“Man can talk because God has chosen him as his partner in talking.” Walter Trobisch, The Misunderstood Man: Why Men Suffer and What Can Be Done About It (Editions Trobisch, 1987), p. 71.

“Don’t judge a man until you have walked for a moon in his moccasins.” Native American proverb quoted in Walter Trobisch, The Misunderstood Man: Why Men Suffer and What Can Be Done About It (Editions Trobisch, 1987), p. 79.

Mercy

The mercy of God is not so ‘marvellous’ when it is shown in humbler cities as when it is shown in ‘a strong city'” Hippolytus, Historical and Dogmatic Fragments (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 5:202)

Mind

“The mind is the man.” Oliver Cromwell in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 99.

Ministry

“. . . what is unsuitable to the Ministerial character is obviously unsuitable to the probationer for the Ministry.” Charles Bridges, The Christian Ministry: With an Inquiry into the Causes of Its Inefficiency, 6th London Edition (New York, Robert Carter, 1847); republished by Forgotten Books, 2012, pp. 16-17.

“None but he who made the world can make a Minister of the Gospel.” John Newton, quoted in Charles Bridges, The Christian Ministry: With an Inquiry into the Causes of Its Inefficiency, 6th London Edition (New York, Robert Carter, 1847); republished by Forgotten Books, 2012, p. 31.

“The main design of the ministry is to carry our people forward ~ ‘to present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.'” Charles Bridges, The Christian Ministry: With an Inquiry into the Causes of Its Inefficiency, 6th London Edition (New York, Robert Carter, 1847); republished by Forgotten Books, 2012, p. 58.

Moral Law

“It is a favorite tactic of those who oppose any Moral Law to propose extremely difficult circumstances in which application of our code of conduct seems unmanageable.” Walter Chantry, Call the Sabbath a Delight (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1991), p. 23.

 

 

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