Thursday, May 30, 2019

Rutherford Revised (152)

152 To Mr Thomas Garven    From Aberdeen 14 March 1637

(An Edinburgh minister banished in 1662 for adherence to presbyery)

Reverend and dear Brother, - I bless you for your letter; it was a shower on the newly mown grass. The Lord has given you the tongue of the educated. Be fruitful and humble.
   It is possible that you will come to the situation I am in, or its like; but the water is not so deep, nor the stream so strong, as they say. I think my fire is not so hot; my water is dry and, my loss rich loss. What will you say if I tell you that the walls of my prison are high, wide and large, and the place sweet! No-one knows it, no-one I say knows it so well, my brother, as He and I; no-one can write it down in black and white; the Lord has sealed it in my heart. My poor stock has grown since I came to Aberdeen; and if anyone knew the wrong I did, in being jealous of such an honest lover as Christ, who did not keep His love from me; they would think more of it. But I see He is more merciful than me. I will never fight with Him; to think of repaying Him is foolishness. If I had as many angel's tongues as the number of raindrops that have fallen since creation, or as many leaves as there are in the trees in all the rest of the earth, or stars in the heavens, to praise, yet my Lord Jesus would always never get His due from me. We will never get our accounts balanced. A pardon must close the books; for His comforts to me in this honourable cause have almost put me beyond the limits of modesty; though I will not let everyone know what is between us. Love, love (I mean Christ's love), is the hottest fire I ever felt. Oh but the smoke of it hot! If you pour all the salt sea on it, it will flame; hell cannot quench it; many waters will not quench love. Christ is turned over to His poor prisoner in a mass and globe of love. I am amazed that he should waste so much love on a waster like me; but he is no wastrel but full of mercy. He is not stingy when he wants to give. Oh that I could invite all the nations to love Him! Free grace is an unknown quantity. This world has heard only the bare name of Christ, no more. There are infinite folds in His love that the saints will never unfold; I wish it was better known, and Christ get more of his due than He does.
   Brother, you have chosen the good part with Christ. You will see Him win the battle, and you will get part of the spoil when he divides it. They are only fools who laugh at us; for they only see the dark side of the moon, yet our moonlight is better than their twelve hours of sun. We have got the New Heavens and as a pledge of that, the Bridegroom's engagement ring. The children of the wedding room have reason to skip and dance for joy; for the wedding super is near, and we find the afternoon meal sweet and comfortable. O time do not be slow; O sun move quickly and speed our feast! O bridegroom, be like a roe or young deer on the mountains! O Well-beloved run fast so we can meet!
   Brother , I restrain myself for lack of time. Pray for me; I hope t remember you. The good will of Him who lived in the bush, the tender mercies of God in Christ, enrich you. Grace be with you.
   Your, in his sweet Lord Jesus,  S.R.

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