No doctrine is more excellent, or necessary to be preached and studied, than Jesus Christ, and him crucified.— John Flavel
The most exciting John Flavel quotes that may be undiscovered and unusual
Did Christ finish His work for us? Then there can be no doubt but He will also finish His work in us.
What a mercy was it to us to have parents that prayed for us before they had us, as well as in our infancy when we could not pray for ourselves!
The law sends us to Christ to be justified, and Christ sends us to the law to be regulated.
The carnal person fears man, not God.
The strong Christian fears God, not man. The weak Christian fears man too much, and God too little.
The knowledge of Christ is profound and large.
All other sciences are but shadows; this is a boundless, bottomless ocean. Though something of Christ be unfolded in one age, and something in another, yet eternity itself cannot full unfold him.
As God did not at first choose you because you were high, He will not now forsake you because you are low.
Suppose that by revenge you might destroy one enemy;
yet, by exercising the Christian's temper you might conquer three–your own lust, Satan's temptation, and your enemy's heart.
If you neglect to instruct children in the way of holiness, will the devil neglect to instruct them in the way of wickedness? No; if you will not teach them to pray, he will to curse, swear, and lie; if ground be uncultivated, weeds will spring.
As the blood of Christ is the fountain of all merit, so the Spirit of Christ is the fountain of all spiritual life; and until he quicken us and infuse the principle of the divine life into our souls, we can put forth no hand, or vital act of faith, to lay hold upon Jesus Christ.
Christ [is] the very essence of all delights and pleasures, the very soul and substance of them. As all the rivers are gathered into the ocean, which is congregation or meeting-place of all waters in the world: so Christ is that ocean in which all true delights and pleasures meet. . . .
To see a man humble under prosperity is one of the greatest rarities in the world.
We must not think that faith itself is the soul's rest;
it is only the means of it. We cannot find rest in any work or duty of our own, but we may find it in Christ, whom faith apprehends for justification and salvation.
[Providences] often puzzle and entangle our thoughts, but bring them to the Word, and your duty will be quickly manifested. "Until I went into the sanctuary of God, then understood I their end" (Ps. 73:17). And not only their end, but his own duty, to be quiet in an afflicted condition and not envy their prosperity.
They that know God will be humble. They that know themselves cannot be proud.
Regeneration expresses those supernatural, divine, new qualities imparted by the Spirit to the soul, which are the principle of all holy action.
Jesus, our head, is already in heaven; and if the head be above water, the body cannot drown.
Tell me, you vain professor, when did you shed a tear for the deadness, hardness, unbelief, or earthliness of your heart? Do you think that such an easy religion can save you? If so, we may invert Christ's words and say, 'Wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to life, and may there be that go in there.'
If God has given you but a small portion of the world, yet if you are godly He has promised never to forsake you (Heb. 13:5). Providence has ordered that condition for you which is really best for your eternal good. If you had more of the world than you have, your heads and hearts might not be able to manage it to your advantage.
Grace makes the promise and providence the payment.
One word of God can do more than ten thousand words of men to relieve a distressed soul.
All the tears of a penitent sinner, should he shed as many as there have fallen drops of rain, since the creation, to this day, cannot wash away one sin. The everLasting burnings in hell, cannot purify the flaming conscience, from the least sin.
Affliction is a pill, which, being wrapt up in patience and quiet submission, may be easily swallowed; but discontent chews the pill, and so embitters the soul.
And now let us consider and marvel that ever this great and blessed God should be so much concerned, as you have heard He is in all His providences, about such vile, despicable worms as we are! He does not need us, but is perfectly blessed and happy in Himself without us. We can add nothing to Him.
Jesus Christ is in every way sufficient to the vast desires of the soul.
Look around in the world, and you may see some in every place who are objects of pity, bereaved by sad accidents of all the comforts of life, while in the meantime Providence has tenderly preserved you.
Providence so orders the case, that faith and prayer come between our wants and supplies, and the goodness of God may be the more magnified in our eyes thereby.
That which begins not with prayer, seldom winds up with comfort.
I think it is not very difficult to discern by the duties and converses of Christians, what frames their spirits are under. Take a Christian in a good frame, and how serious, heavenly, and profitable, will his converses and duties be! what a lovely companion is he during the continuance of it!
Guilt is to danger, what fire is to gunpowder;
a man need not fear to walk among many barrels of powder, if he have no fire about him.
Providence is like a curious piece of tapestry made of a thousand shreds, which, single, appear useless, but put together, they represent a beautiful history to the eye.
To keep the heart then, is carefully to preserve it from sin which disorders it;
and maintain that spiritual and gracious frame, which fits it for a life of communion with God.
God's unspotted faithfulness never failed any soul that durst trust himself in its arms.
When the world smiles upon us, and we have got a warm nest, how do we prophesy of rest and peace in those acquisitions, thinking with good Baruch, great things for ourselves, but Providence by a particular or general calamity overturns our plans (Jer. 45:4,5), and all this to turn our hearts from the creature to God.
We acknowledge no righteousness but what the obedience and satisfaction of Christ yields us. His blood, not our faith; his satisfaction, not our believing it, is the matter of our justification before God.
The soul of man, like the bird in the shell, is still growing or ripening in sin or grace, till at last the shell breaks by death, and the soul flies away to the piece it is prepared for, and where it must abide forever.
Oh sirs, deal with sin as sin, and speak of heaven and hell as they are, and not as if you were in jest.
There is no grace more excellent than faith;
no sin more execrable and abominable then unbelief. Faith is the saving grace and unbelief the damning sin. (Mark 16:16) ... Before Christ can be received, the heart must be emptied and opened: but men's heart's are full of self-righteousn ess and vain confidence (Rom 10:3).
Some providences, like Hebrew letters, must be read backwards.
All the dark, intricate, puzzling providences at which we were sometimes so offended...we shall [one day] see to be to us, as the difficult passage through the wilderness was to Israel, "the right way to the city of habitation".
O my soul, I am now addressing myself to the greatest work that ever a creature was employed about - I am going into the solemn presence of God about business of everlasting importance!
Christian, thou knowest thou carriest Gunpowder about thee, desire those that carry Fire to keep at a Distance from thee; 'tis a dangerous Crisis when a proud Heart meets with flattering Lips.
It is a common thing for men to benumb their own arms, and make them as dead and useless by leaning too much upon them: so it is in a moral as well as a natural way: all the prudence and pains in the world avail nothing without God. So saith the Psalmist, in Psalm cxxvii. 2.
Sometimes God makes use of instruments for good to His people, who designed nothing but evil and mischief to them. Thus Joseph's brethren were instrumental to his advancement in that very thing in which they designed his ruin (Gen. 50:20).
The opening of your hearts to receive the Lord Jesus Christ is not a work done by any power of your own, but the arm of the Lord is revealed therein.
Whatsoever we have over-loved, idolized, and leaned upon, God has from time to time broken it, and made us to see the vanity of it; so that we find the readiest course to be rid of our comforts is to set our hearts inordinately upon them.
The Lord's supper is memorative, and so it has the nature and use of a pledge or token of love, left by a dying to a dear surviving friend.
Wrath to come implies both the futurity and perpetuity of this wrath.
... Yea, it is not only certainly future, but when it comes it will be abiding wrath, or wrath still coming. When millions of years and ages are past and gone, this will still be wrath to come. Ever coming as a river ever flowing.
Lord, here is my body; I am very grateful for it; I neglected nothing that belonged to its contents and welfare; but as for my soul, that is lost and cast away forever. I took little.care and thought about it.
It is the great support and solace of the saints in all the distresses that befall them here, that there is a wise Spirit sitting in all the wheels of motion, and governing the most eccentric creatures and their most pernicious designs to blessed and happy issues.