B.B. Warfield, “Faith and Life” (found in Selected Shorter Writings, vol. 1.):
Convictions are the root on which the tree of vital Christianity grows. No convictions, no Christianity. Scanty convictions, hunger-bitten Christianity. Profound convictions, solid and substantial religion. Let no man fancy it can be otherwise. Ignorance is not the mother of religion, but of irreligion. The knowledge of God is eternal life, and to know God means that we know him aright.
Hugh Binning, Works, p. 311:
Labour to know the will and truth of God, that you may see that light that shines in the gospel; and not only to receive it in your minds, but in your hearts by love, that so you may endeavour in all sincerity the doing of that truth, the conscionable practising of what you know. And this, as it is a great point of conformity to the light, so it will make you capable of more light from God; for he delights to show his liberality, where he hath any acceptance. Be not satisfied, O be not satisfied, with knowing these truths, and discoursing upon them; but make them further your own, by impressing them deeply in your hearts, and expressing them plainly in your ways! This is “pure religion and undefiled,” James 1:27. And “is not this to know me, saith the Lord?” Jer. 22:16. Practice is real knowledge, because it is living knowledge. It is the very life and soul of Christianity, when there needs no more but the intimation of his will to carry the whole man. This is what we should all aspire unto, and not satisfy ourselves in our poor attainments below this.
Source: https://www.puritanboard.com/threads/practice-is-real-knowledge.89459/, Comment 1
Fairbarn, The Revelation of Law in Scripture, on the connection between God’s particular choice and his universal purpose:
“From the time that God began to select a particular line as the channel of His revealed will to man, He made it clear that the good of all was intended. A special honour was in this respect to be conferred on the progeny of Shem, as compared with the other branches of Noah’s posterity but it was not doubtfully intimated that those other branches should participate in the benefit. When, however, the Divine purpose took effect, as it so early did, in the selection of Abraham and his seed, the end aimed at was from the first announced to be of the most comprehensive kind–namely, that in Abraham and his seed ‘all the families of the earth should be blessed.’ It was but giving expression in another form to this announcement, and breathing the spirit couched in it, when Moses, pointing to the destiny of Israel, exclaimed, ‘Rejoice, O ye nations, with His people;’and when the Psalmist prayed, ‘God be merciful to us and bless us, that thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations’—the true prosperity of Israel being thus expressly coupled with the general diffusion of God’s knowledge and blessing, and the one sought with a view to the other. Hence also the temple, which was at once the symbol and the centre of all that God was to Israel, was designated by the prophet ‘an house of prayer for all peoples.’ And hence, yet again, and as the proper issue of the whole, Jesus—the Israel by way of eminence, the impersonation of all that Israel should have been, but never more than most imperfectly was—the One in whom at once the calling of Israel and the grand purpose of God for the good of men found their true realization—He, while appearing only as a Jew among Jews, yet was not less the life and light of the world—revealing the Father for men of every age and country, and making reconciliation for iniquity on behalf of all who should believe on His name, to the farthest limits of the earth and to the very end of time.”
Source: http://www.puritanboard.com/showthread.php/89904-Not-less-the-life-and-light-of-the-world, Comment #1
“So hopeless and senseless a picture must be drawn of the natural man’s methodology based as it is upon the assumption that time or chance is ultimate. On his assumption his own rationality is a product of chance. On his assumption even the laws of logic which he employs are products of chance. The rationality and purpose that he may be searching for are still bound to be products of chance. So then the Christian apologist, whose position requires him to hold that Christian theism is really true and as such must be taken as the presupposition which alone makes the acquisition of knowledge in any field intelligible, must join his “friend” in his hopeless gyrations so as to point out to him that his efforts are always in vain.”
(Source: Cornelius Van Til, The Defense of the Faith (P&R, 1972), p. 102.)
Image: Mark Anderson (click image to see original file)
Hugh Binning (Treatise of Christian Love), Works, p. 532:
Here we know but darkly and in part, and therefore our knowledge, at best, is but obscure and inevident, oft-times subject to many mistakes and misapprehensions of truth, according as mediums represent them. And therefore there must be some latitude of love allowed one to another in this state of imperfection, else it is impossible to keep unity, and we must conflict often with our own shadows, and bite and devour one another for some deceiving appearances. The imperfection and obscurity of knowledge should make all men jealous of themselves, especially in matters of a doubtful nature, and not so clearly determined by scripture. Because our knowledge is weak, shall our love be so? Nay, rather let charity grow stronger, and aspire unto perfection, because knowledge is imperfect. What is wanting in knowledge let us make up in affection, and let the gap of difference in judgment be swallowed up with the bowels of mercies and love, and humbleness of mind. And then we shall have hid our infirmity of understanding as much as may be. Thus we may go hand in hand together to our Father’s house, where, at length, we must be together.
Source: http://www.puritanboard.com/showthread.php/90190-Let-charity-grow-stronger-and-aspire-unto-perfection, Comment 1
Thomas Manton, Works VI, p. 117:
We are apt to abuse our knowledge. Saving knowledge makes us more humble, but carnal knowledge more proud. Where it is in gift rather than in grace, there men are puffed up. The more we know God or ourselves by a divine light, the more humble we shall be. “When I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh; I was ashamed, even confounded, because I did bear the reproach of my youth,” (Jer. 31.18, 19). The more light we have from God, the more we look into a vile heart. When Adam’s eyes are opened, he runs into the bushes; he was ashamed. So when God opens the eyes, and teacheth a Christian, this makes him more humble.
Via Regeneration, Repentance and Reformation:
Written by John Flavel
Taken and adapted from ilyston.wordpress.com
Published by Timothy Williams
THREE SIGNS OF THE MATURITY OF GRACE.
1. When wheat is near ripe, it bows the head, and stoops lower than when it was green. When the people of God are near ripe for heaven, they grow more humble and self-denying than in the days of their first profession. The longer a saint grows in this world, the better he is still acquainted with his own heart, and his obligations to God; both which are very humbling things. Paul had one foot in heaven, when he called himself the chiefest of sinners, and least of saints (1 Tim. 1: 15; Eph. 3: 8). A Christian, in the progress of his knowledge and grace, is like a vessel cast into the sea; the more it fills, the deeper it sinks. Those that went to study at Athens (saith Plutarch), at first coming seemed to themselves to be wise men; afterwards, only lovers of wisdom; and after that only rhetoricians, such as could speak of wisdom, but knew little of it; and last of all, idiots in their own apprehensions; still with the increase of learning laying aside their pride and arrogance.
Read more: http://regenerationandrepentance.wordpress.com/2014/07/15/grace-and-evil-the-signs-of-their-unfolding-maturescence/