Quotations N ~ Z

Persecution

“The oftener we are mown down by you, the more in number we grow; the blood of Christians is the seed.” Tertullian, Apology  (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 3:55)

Perseverence

“. . . it is easy to hear Christ, easy to praise the gospel, easy to applaud the preacher: but to endure unto the end, is peculiar to the sheep who hear the Shepherd’s voice.” (Augustine, “On the Gospel of St. John,” Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers [First Series] 7:254)

Philosophy

“O miserable philosophy, which stretches the mind on the rack, and breaks it on the wheel! O blessed faith, which drives away the inquisitors, and sets the captive free!” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, on Psalm 73:21).

Poetry

“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.

Possessions

“It is not important that I should have no possessions, but if I do I must keep them as thought I had them not, in other words I must cultivate a spirit of inward detachment, so that my heart is not in my possessions.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

Prayer/Praying

“Teach me to seek you, and reveal yourself to me, when I seek you, for I cannot seek you, except you teach me, nor find you, except you reveal yourself. Let me seek you in longing, let me long for you in seeking; let me find you in love, and love you in finding.” Anselm, Proslogium, chapter 1. Herein is rest!

“Happy is that church which has a praying ministry as well as a preaching ministry!” J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on Mark, reprint ed. (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1985), p. 123.

“. . . if prayer does not make a man leave sin, sin will make him leave prayer.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 68.

“What we win by prayer we may wear with comfort, and must wear with praise.” Matthew Henry’s Commentary (McLean, Virginia: MacDonald Publishing Company), 2:284.

Preachers

“Preachers are like matchsticks. God strikes us. We glow for a little while. Then he reaches for another.” Peter Trumper

Preaching 

Preaching and conviction

“We are not sent into the pulpit to shew our wit and eloquence but to set teh consciences of men on fire.” Solomon Stoddard in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 8.

Preaching and Hearing:

“Happy is he who speaks in the ears of the hearing.” Clement of Alexandria, The Stromata (Ante-Nicene Fathers 2:444)

“It is just not true that every word of criticism directed against contemporary preaching is a deliberate rejection of Christ and proceeds from the spirit of Antichrist. So many people come to church with a genuine desire to hear what we have to say, yet they are always going back home with the uncomfortable feeling that we are making it too difficult for them to come to Jesus.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship.

Preaching and Reading

“Powerful biblical preaching invariably gives rise to serious Christian reading” Iain H. Murray in Iain H. Murray, Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 464.

Profession of Faith or of Christ

“None profess to be on Christ’s side, but they who profess to renounce his rivals.” Jonathan Edwards, quoted in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 337.

Promises of God

God “never feeds men with empty promises” John Calvin, Calvin’s Commentaries, Volume 1, Commentaries on the Book of Genesis, Volume 1, Reprint ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2005), 538.

Purity

“Purity is to think holy thoughts.” Clement of Alexandria, The Stromata, (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 2:447)

Reading

“We read to know we’re not alone.” Mr. Whistler (student) to C S Lewis in Shadowlands

Reform

“. . . some will say perhaps, Shall there, then, be no progress in Christ’s Church? Certainly; all possible progress. For what being is there, so envious of men, so full of hatred to God, who would seek to forbid it? Yet on condition that it be real progress, not alteration of the faith. For progress requires that the subject be enlarged in itself, alteration, that it be transformed into something else. The intelligence, then, the knowledge, the wisdom, as well of individuals as of all, as well of one man as of the whole Church, ought, in the course of ages and centuries, to increase and make much and vigorous progress; but yet only in its own kind; that is to say, in the same doctrine, in the same sense, and in the same meaning.” Vincent of Lerins, A Commonitory (Nicene and Post–Nicene Fathers 11:148; cf.,129)

Repentance

“In Adam we all suffered shipwreck, and repentance is the only plank left us after shipwreck to swim to heaven.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 13.

“It is a great shame not to be ashamed.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 43.

“We are never more precious in God’s eyes than when we are lepers in our own.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 45.

“If ever Christ brings men to heaven it shall be through the gates of hell.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 60

“God will not save us without repentance, nor yet for it.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 96.

“We please God by repentance but we do not satisfy him by it.” Thomas Watson, The Doctrine of Repentance, first published 1668 (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), pp. 96-97.

Reproof

“I count it a greater good to be reproved than to reprove, inasmuch as it is most excellent to free oneself from evil than to free another” Methodius (260-312 A.D.), Fragments (Ante-Nicene Fathers 6:402)

Revival

“. . . when religion is in decay, the saint can scarcely be distinguished from the sinner; but, when a time of refreshing comes, then will they blossom and bring forth fruit abundantly.” Thomas Boston, quoted in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 211. 

Rumors

LQ: Tertullian, Apology, (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 3:24)

Sabbath

“We are as much called to work the six days as we are to rest on the seventh.” Daniel Wilson, The Lord’s Day (The Divine Authority and Perpetual Obligation of the Lord’s Day), Paperback Edition (London: The Lord’s Day Observance Society, 1988), p. 143.

“. . . in nothing does the Church on earth so nearly approach the Church above, as in the harmonious and devout exercise of public worship.” Daniel Wilson, The Lord’s Day (The Divine Authority and Perpetual Obligation of the Lord’s Day), Paperback Edition (London: The Lord’s Day Observance Society, 1988), p. 146.

” . . . the Sabbath is so closely connected with Christianity itself, that as our Christianity rises or falls, so will our observation of the sacred season be elevated, or decline. Nothing is more difficult, considering our corruption and the snares of Satan, than a holy, wise, and kind, and yet resolute government of ourselves and families on the Lord Day. All possible hindrances arise to oppose this duty.” Daniel Wilson, The Lord’s Day (The Divine Authority and Perpetual Obligation of the Lord’s Day), Paperback Edition (London: The Lord’s Day Observance Society, 1988), pp. 161-62.

“The Sabbath interposes a space between total irreligion and the conscience of man; it puts in teh claims of God uon the human heart.” Daniel Wilson, The Lord’s Day (The Divine Authority and Perpetual Obligation of the Lord’s Day), Paperback Edition (London: The Lord’s Day Observance Society, 1988), p. 172.

Other quotations from Wilson, pp. 173-74, 179, 190, 205, 209, 219,

“The Christian sabbath is one of the most precious enjoyments of the visible church . . . The sabbath seems to have been appointed very much for this end, viz., to uphold the visibility of religion in public, or among professing societies of men . . . .  The Lord Jesus Christ takes delight in his own day; he delights to honour it; he delights to meet with and manifest himself to his disciples on it . . . .” Jonathan Edwards, quoted in Iain H. Murray’s Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1987), p. 186.

Salvation

“Tell me I’ve led a good life. Tell me I’m a good man.” An elderly Private Ryan looking for comfort at the grave of Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks) who had led the expedition during his younger days to save his life.

Scripture 

“We must have a high use of Scripture and not simply a high view of it.” Tim J. R. Trumper, passim.

“When twentieth [now twenty-first] century Christians give the same place to the Scriptures as did those of the first century, their spiritual power will be comparable to that of the early church.” Rene Pache, The Inspiration and Authority of Scripture, paperback edition, translated by Helen I. Needham (Chicago: Moody, 1980) p. 226

“The Bible brings God down to man and lifts man up to God.” Cited from U.S. Federal District Judge W. R. Wallace in Rene Pache, The Inspiration and Authority of Scripture, paperback edition, translated by Helen I. Needham (Chicago: Moody, 1980) p. 243

“Scripture resembles a flower. We find the seed in Genesis, the growing plant in the books which follow, the fully developed and beautiful flower in the Apocalypse.” William Hendrikson, Survey of the Bible: A Treasury of Bible Information, 4th Revised Edition (Welwyn, Herts, England and Grand Rapids, Michigan: Evangelical Press, 1977), p. 442

“Scripture is a word from God to us on the way toward life in God.” Brevard S. Childs on Origen’s contribution to Biblical Theology in Biblical Theology of the Old and New Testaments: Theological Reflection on the Christian Bible (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992), p. 35.

Authority of Scripture:

“Without paradox we can say that the believer submitted to the authority of Scripture himself becomes clothed with a part of that same authority.” Rene Pache, The Inspiration and Authority of Scripture, paperback edition, translated by Helen I. Needham (Chicago: Moody, 1980) p. 324-25

Inspiration of Scripture

“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 

 

“Even as we need grace because of our moral incapacity, we need inspiration because of our intellectual and spiritual incapacity.” Rene Pache, The Inspiration & Authority of Scripture, paperback edition (Chicago: Moody Press, 1980), p. 79 

 

“Give me the plenary, verbal theory of inspiration, with all its difficulties, rather than doubt. I accept the difficulties and humbly wait for their solution. But while I wait I am standing on the rock.” Quoted from J. C. Ryle in  Rene Pache, The Inspiration & Authority of Scripture, paperback edition (Chicago: Moody Press, 1980), p. 158.

Self-love

“When men are in love with themselves they are unhappy in this life. Self-absorption also causes men, women, and children to perish.” Walter Chantry, Call the Sabbath a Delight (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1991), p. 39.

Sex

“A sexual relationship with no humor is like the animals'” Walter Trobisch, The Misunderstood Man: Why Men Suffer and What Can Be Done About It (Editions Trobisch, 1987), p. 69.

Singleness

“Jack doesn’t know any children”

“Who says I don’t know any children. My brother was a child, and unlikely as it may seem, so was I” C S Lewis, Shadowlands

Slander

“. . . slander is evil and an unsteady demon. It never abides in peace, but always remains in discord. Keep yourself from it, and you will always be at peace with all.” The Pastor [or Shepherdof Hermas (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 2:20)

Sonship

“Sonship to God must be understood in a redemptive-historical sense. It is the realization of the promise of the new covenant, the continuation and fulfillment of the bond between the Lord and Israel.” (Herman Ridderbos, The Coming of the Kingdom, translated by H. de Jongste and edited by Raymond O. Zorn (Philipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1962), 235.

Systematic (Dogmatic) Theology

“The Bible is not a dogmatic handbook but a historical book full of dramatic interest. Familiarity with the history of revelation will enable us to utilize all this dramatic interest.Geerhardus Vos, Biblical Theology: Old and New Testaments, First published by William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1948; Reprint Ed. (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1985), p. 17.

“Systematic theology, in its concern with what the Bible as a whole says on any particular topic, may neglect the diversity and dynamic character of God’s Word coming to different ages and epochs.” Vern S. Poythress, Understanding Dispensationalists (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Academie Books [Zondervan], 1987), p. 15.

Technical Terms

“Technical terms are a kind of theological shorthand which helps us to give a careful expression to basic truths and their conceptual interconnections . . . . However, in the last resort they are no more than empty abstract propositions apart from their real content in the specific self-communication of God to us in his revealing and saving acts in history in which he has made himself known to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 203.

Testimonies

If ancient illustrations of faith which both testify to God’s grace and tend to man’s edification are collected in writing, so that by the perusal of them, as if by the reproduction of the facts, as well God may be honoured, as man may be strengthened; why should not new instances be also collected, that shall be equally suitable to both purposes,~ if only on the ground that these modern examples will one day become ancient and available to posterity, although in their present time they are esteemed of less authority, by reason of the presumed veneration for antiquity? Tertullian, The Passion of the Holy Martyrs Perpetua and Felicitas (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 3:699)

Theology

“Theology, always near to prayer, passes into it.” Ronald S. Wallace, “Calvin’s Approach to Theology,” in The Challenge of Evangelical Theology: Essays in Approach and Method, edit. Nigel M. de S. Cameron (Edinburgh: Rutherford House Books, 1987), 143.

Theosis

“The term theosis is indeed embarrassing, if we would think of it in ‘ontological categories’. Indeed, man simply simply cannot become ‘god’. But the Fathers were thinking in ‘personal’ terms, and the mystery of personal communion was involved at this point. Theosis means a personal encounter. It is the ultimate intercourse with God, in which the whole of human existence is, as it were, permeated by the Divine Presence.” Georges Florovsky, quoted in Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 96.

Tradition

“To walk the old paths does not mean to say that we have to wear old shoes.” Tim J. R. Trumper, passim.

“To polish the family silver doesn’t mean we intend to sell it.” Tim J. R. Trumper, passim.

Trinity

“. . . the doctrine of the Trinity belongs to the very heart of saving faith where it constitutes the inner shape of Christian worship and the dynamic grammar of Christian theology; it expresses the essential and distinctively Christian understanding of God by which we live, and which is of crucial significance for the evangelical mission of the Church as well.” Thomas F. Torrance commenting on the influence of Karl Barth (Protestant) and Karl Rahner (Roman Catholic) in reconnecting the doctrine of the Trinity to the history of salvation through Christ, and in restoring the classic Greek patristic understanding of the Trinity within the Church’s confession of the incarnation and mystery of salvation (The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons [Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996], p. 10).

“. . . we must think of the doctrine of the Holy Trinity and the doctrines of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, as interpenetrating each other, such that the ‘whole’ is in each ‘part’, and each ‘part’ is in the ‘whole’. Hence the doctrine of the Holy Trinity may not be expounded just by itself apart from the doctrines of the Father, the Son and the Spirit, and the doctrines of the Father, the Son and the Spirit may not be expounded simply by themselves in isolation from one another or from the whole Trinity.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 29.

“. . . the Godhead is undivided in divided Persons due to their identity of Being, rather like three suns cleaving to one another without any separation and giving out their light combined and conjoined into one.” Thomas F. Torrance, The Christian Doctrine of God, One Being Three Persons (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1996), p. 171.

Truth

” . . . by whom has truth ever been discovered without God? By whom has God ever been found without Christ? By whom has Christ ever been explored without the Holy Spirit? By whom has the Holy Spirit ever been attained without the mysterious gift of faith?” Tertullian, A Treatise On the Soul (Ante-Nicene Fathers , 3:181).

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

Wine

“For the temperate drinker, one wine suffices, the product of the cultivation of the one God.” Clement of Alexandria, The Instructor, (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 2:245)

Works

“‘For by grace we are saved:’ not, indeed, without good works; but we must, by being formed for what is good, acquire an inclination for it.” Clement of Alexandria, The Stromata, (Ante-Nicene Fathers, 2:445)

“Our activity must be visible, but never be done for the sake of making it visible.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

Worship

“Nothing but a weekly day of worship will begin to touch the ignorance which has gripped humanity. This alone, under God, can save families, churches, schools and governments from total moral collapse.” Walter Chantry, Call the Sabbath a Delight (Edinburgh and Carlisle, PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1991), p. 11. 

Writing

“Those who are only satisfied if they can write the last word will never write anything.” Walter Trobisch, The Misunderstood Man: Why Men Suffer and What Can Be Done About It (Editions Trobisch, 1987), p. 95.

Leave a Reply