Monday, October 29, 2012

The Religion of Heaven

“If we would learn what true religion is, we must go where there is true religion, and nothing but true religion, and in its highest perfection, without any defect or mixture. All who are truly religious are not of this world, they are strangers here, and belong to heaven; they are born from above, heaven is their native country, and the nature which they receive by this heavenly birth, is a heavenly nature, they receive an anointing from above; that principle of true religion which is in them, is a communication of the religion of heaven; their grace is the dawn of glory; and God fits them for that world by conforming them to it. This appears from the nature and design of the ordinances and duties, which God hath appointed, as means and expressions of true religion.”
- Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), “Religious Affections”

Edwards’ appeal to “the ordinances and duties, which God hath appointed” as the legitimate practice of “the religion of heaven” should make us reverent and sober both in the formation of the liturgy of the gathering of the Church and in our daily lives of worshipful devotion to our Savior-God and King.

“...the acceptable way of worshipping the true God has been instituted by Himself, and therefore our method of worship is limited by His own revealed will. He may not be worshipped according to the imagination and devices of men...He may not be any other way not prescribed in the Holy Scriptures.”
- 1689 London Confession of Faith, 22.1

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