Wednesday, April 09, 2008

The Love of Christ

Rev John Maclaurin

Comparisons can give but a very imperfect view of this love which passeth knowledge. Though we should suppose all the love of all the men that ever were, or shall be on the earth, and all the love of the angels in heaven, united in one heart, it would be but a cold heart to that which was pierced with the soldier's spear. The Jews saw but blood and water, but faith can discern a bright ocean of eternal love flowing out of these wounds. We may have some impression of the glory of it, by considering its effects.

We should consider all the spiritual and eternal blessings, received by God's people for four thousand years before Christ was crucified, or that have been received since, or that shall be received till the consummation of all things; all the deliverances from eternal misery; all the oceans of joy in heaven; the rivers of waters of life, to be enjoyed to all eternity, by multitudes as the sands of the sea-shore - we should consider all these blessings as flowing from that love, that was displayed in the cross of Christ.

Maclaurin's writings have been held in very high regard. Dr John Brown called Maclaurin "the most profound and eloquent Scottish theologian of the last [18th]century". His sermon, "Glorying in the Cross of Christ," is reckoned to be one of the best sermons in print. Maclaurin was born iu 1693, and was the eldest son of the minister of the parish of Glendaruel, Argyleshire. Having studied divinity at Glasgow and at Leyden, he was in 1719 ordained minister at Luss on the shores of Loch Lomond. He translated the psalms into Gaelic. In 1723 he became minister of what was then known as the North-west Parish in Glasgow. Maclaurin supported the popular or Evangelical party in the Church of Scotland. He took a close interest in the revivals at Kilsyth and Cambuslang. He was the friend and correspondent of Jonathan Edwards, and on one occasion collected contributions among his friends in Scotland, to assist Edwards in a period of difficulty. He died in 1754.