Jonathan Edwards’ Resolutions – #1

Resolved, That I will do whatsoever I think to be most to the glory of God, and my own good, profit, and pleasure, in the whole of my duration; without any consideration of the time, whether now, or never so many myriads of ages hence. Resolved, to do whatever I think to be my duty, and most for the good and advantage of mankind in general. Resolved, so to do, whatever difficulties I meet with, how many soever, and how great soever.

Here we see a particular emphasis on wanting to do what will be most beneficial to bringing glory to God. This should be our aim, and it is so easy to get pulled off track in this process. When we allow ourselves to take our eyes off of God, we will fall short (cf. Matthew 14:23-31). Following that, he focuses on whatever will be to the most ‘good, profit, and pleasure, in the whole of my duration’. This, I feel, stems from the first part. As we keep our eyes fixed upon God, He is our ultimate joy, our ultimate satisfaction, and as we walk in His ways, our paths will be aligned with His.

Another interesting piece within this resolution is the comment he made about the time (‘without any consideration of the time’). There’s much talk as to what exactly this means, but to me I think of being resolved to taking a task to its completion; let’s not get hung up on dates of completion more than we do completing the task itself. Let us not get discouraged if something is taking longer than expected, but resolve to enduring whatever it takes to bring it to fullness.

Lastly, he points out difficulties. We see, even in the opening quote (see “Jonathan Edwards’ Resolutions” post previous to this) that Edwards realizes that we cannot go through this on our own; if it’s up to our own power, we will fail. Difficulties, hindrances, and distractions will come–this may come in the form of obvious resistance, or seemingly well-intended things–but it’s up to us to be resolute in our pursuit of God. As we set our hearts and our minds to proceed in the ways of Christ, we will grow in the understanding of His sufficiency for us (Phil. 2:13 says ‘it is GOD who works IN US both to will and to work for His good pleasure).

Are we willing to lay down our arms, our own desires [which are ultimately fleeting], our own comforts, and pick up the cross God is asking of us? It won’t be easy, but when we get a glimpse of the God who is, we will quickly understand that it will be wholly worth it.

Phil. 4:13 – “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.”

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