The Fear of God and the Cross of Christ

I found this great quote by John Brown (a 19th century Scottish pastor/theologian) in Jerry Bridges’ book, The Joy of Fearing God.

“Nothing is so well fitted to put the fear of God, which will preserve men from offending him, into the heart, as an enlightened view of the cross of Christ.  There shines spotless holiness, inflexible justice, incomprehensible wisdom, omnipotent power, holy love.  None of these excellencies darken or eclipse the other, but every one of them rather gives a lustre to the rest.  They mingle their beams, and shine with united eternal splendour: the just Judge, the merciful Father, the wise Governor.  Nowhere does justice appear so awful, mercy so amiable, or wisdom so profound.”

Of course, “awful” in the last sentence there doesn’t mean terrible or bad; it means God’s justice displayed on the cross fills the Christian with awe.

The quote can be found on page 76 of Bridges’ book, or in volume 1, page 472-3 of Brown’s Expository Discourses on 1 Peter.

shane lems

sunnyside, wa