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What Think You about Christ?


What do you think about the Christ, whose son is He?

—Matthew 22:42


First, what think you about the person of Christ? ’Whose Son is he?‘ This is the question our Lord put to the Pharisees in the words following the text. And never was it more necessary to repeat this question than in these last days. For numbers that are called after the name of Christ and I fear, many that pretend to preach him, are so far advanced in the blasphemous chair as openly to deny his being really, truly, and properly God. But no one that ever was partaker of his Spirit will speak thus lightly of him. No, if they are asked, as Peter and his brethren were, ’But whom say ye that I am?‘ they will reply without hesitation, ’Thou art Christ the Son of the ever-living God.‘ For the confession of our Lord‘s divinity, is the rock upon which he builds his church. Was it possible to take this away, the gates of hell would quickly prevail against it.

. . .

But secondly, what think you of the manhood or incarnation of Jesus Christ? For Christ was not only God but he was God and man in one person. Thus runs the text and context, ’When the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, What think ye of Christ? Whose Son is he? They say unto him, The Son of David. How then, says our divine Master, does David in spirit call him Lord?‘ From which passage it is evident, that we do not think rightly of the person of Jesus Christ, unless we believe him to be perfect God and perfect man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting.

. . .

The reason why the Son of God took upon him our nature was the Fall of our first parents. . . . As God made man, so God made him perfect. He placed him in the garden of Eden and condescended to enter into a covenant with him, promising him eternal life upon condition of unsinning obedience. And threatening eternal death, if he broke his law and did eat the forbidden fruit.

Man did eat. And herein acting as our representative, thereby involved both himself and us in that curse, which God, the righteous judge, had said should be the consequence of his disobedience. But here begins that mystery of godliness, God manifested in the flesh. For (sing, O heavens and rejoice, O earth!) the eternal Father, foreseeing how Satan would bruise the heel of man had in his eternal counsel provided a means whereby he might bruise that accursed serpent‘s head. Man is permitted to fall and become subject to death. But Jesus, the only begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds, Light of light, very God of very God, offers to die to make an atonement for his transgression and to fulfil all righteousness in his stead.

And because it was impossible for him to do this as he was God and yet since man had offended it was necessary it should be done in the person of man. Rather than we should perish, this everlasting God, this Prince of Peace, this Ancient of Days, in the fullness of time had a body prepared for him by the Holy Ghost and became an infant. In this body he performed a complete obedience to the law of God whereby he, in our stead, fulfilled the covenant of works and at last became subject to death, even death upon the cross. That as God he might satisfy, as man he might obey and suffer, and being God and man in one person, might once more procure a union between God and our souls.

And now, what think you of this love of Christ? Do not you think it was wondrous great? Especially when you consider that we were Christ‘s bitter enemies and that he would have been infinitely happy in himself, notwithstanding we had perished forever. Whatever you may think of it, I know the blessed angels, who are not so much concerned in this mystery of godliness as we, think most highly of it. They do, they will desire to look into and admire it, through all eternity. Why, why O ye sinners, will you not think of this love of Christ? Surely it must melt down the most hardened heart. Whilst I am speaking, the thought of this infinite and condescending love fires and warms my soul. I could dwell on it forever.

—George Whitefield, “What Think Ye of Christ?” in Lee Gatiss (Ed.), The Sermons of George Whitefield (Crossway, 2012), 1:405, 407–408.

Posted 2019·01·22 by David Kjos
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Posted in: George Whitefield · The Sermons of George Whitefield

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