This past week I began reading through a printed EEBO edition of Samuel Rutherford's Christ Dying and Drawing Sinners to Himself (1647). For those like myself who absolutely need to get their hands on a hard copy in order to read a volume like this (even if the Kindle version is much cleaner), you can find one on Amazon. Below are some of the highlights from the sections I've been reading through thus far (with a few minor alterations of punctuation and spelling for enhanced accessibility). Enjoy!
[Christ] received an acquittance of justification, never a pardon of grace; 1 Tim. 3:16. Justified in the Spirit. [p. 7]
If my soul or your souls, O redeemed of the Lord, could be valued every one of them worth ten thousand millions of souls, and as many heavens, they could not over-weigh the soul of God [in Christ]; the soul that lodges in a glorious union with God; and the loss of heaven to the troubled soul of this noble, and high and lofty one, though but for a time, was more, and infinitely greater than my loss of heaven and hte loss of all the elect for eternity. [p. 7]
You sin (saith the Love of loves) and I suffer. You did the wrong, I make the amends. You sin and sing in your carnal joys, I weep for your joy. The fairest face that ever was, was foul with weeping for your sinful rejoicing. It was fitting that free-love in the bowels of Christ should contrive the way to heaven through free-love. We should never in heaven cast down our crowns at the feet of him that sits on the throne with such fear and admiration if we had come to the crown by law-doing and not by gospel-confiding on a rich Ransom-payer. [p. 8]
We complain in our soul-trouble of Christ's departure from us, but he is not gone; our sense is not our Bible, nor a good rule; there is an error in this compass. [p. 11]
If I had any hell on me, I should choose an innocent hell, like Christ's. Better [to] suffer ill a thousand times than sin. [p. 11]
The six days of creation hath been travailing and shouting for pain, and the child is not born yet, Rom. 8:22. This poor woman hath been groaning under the bondage of vanity, and shall not be brought to bed [until] Jesus come the second time to be Mid-wife to the birth. [p. 12]
Soft and childish saints take it not well that they are not every day feasted with Christ's love, that they lie not all the night between the Redeemer's breasts, and are not dandled on his knee... But they forget the difference between the inns of clay and the home of glory. Our fields here are sown with tears, grief grows in every furrow of this low-land. You shall lay soul and head down in the bosom and between the breasts of Jesus Christ; that bed must be soft and delicious; it's perfumed with uncreated glory. The thoughts of all your now soul-troubles shall be as shadows that passed away ten thousand years ago, when Christ shall circle his glorious arm about your head, and you rest in an infinite compass of surpassing glory; or when glory, or ripened grace, shall be within you, and without you, above, and below, when feet of clay shall walk upon pure surpassing glory: The street of the city was pure gold: There is no gold there, but glory only; gold is but a shadow to all that is there. [p. 13]
If the ransom [Christ] gave had been [too] little, he would have given more. [p. 14]
O Love of heaven, and fairest of Beloveds, the flower of Angels, why camest thou so low down, as to be-spot and under-rate the spotless love of all loves, with coming nigh to black sinners? Who could have believed that lumps of hell and sin could be capable of the warmings and sparkles of so high and princely a Love? Or that there could be place in the breast of the High and Lofty One for forlorn and guilty clay. [p 15]
We would either have a silken, a soft, a perfumed cross, sugared and honeyed with the consolations of Christ, or we faint; and providence must either brew a cup of gall and wormwood mastered in the mixing with joy and songs, else we cannot be disciples. But Christ's cross did not smile on him, his cross was a cross, and his ship sailed in blood, and his blessed soul was sea-sick and heavy even to death. [p. 15]
The peace that the Lord bringeth out of the womb of war is better than the rotten peace that we had in the superstitious days of the prelates.
Heaven is the more heaven that to Christ it was a purchase of blood. [p. 16]
We cannot have a paper-cross; except we would take on us to... put the creation in a new frame and take the world and make it a great leaden vessel, melt it in the fire, and cast a new mold of it. [p. 16]
Many nowadays give out [that] they have so much of the Lord Jesus, that they are Christed and swallowed up in his love, yet should I think it all happiness, if I could but tell Christ's name [Prov. 30:4], and were so deeply learned as to know how they call him [Isa. 53:8]. [To the Reader]
In this learned age, when Antinomians write book after book of Christ, I should say, for all their crying, O the Gospel-Spirit, the Gospel-Strain of Preaching, the Mystery of free grace (which few of them know), that one ounce, one grain of the spiritual and practical knowledge of Christ is more to be valued than talent-weights, yea, ship-loads or mountains of knowledge of the dumb school-letter. They say, the saints are perfect, and their works perfect. I slander them not: read Master Towne, M. Eaton, and Saltmarsh. But how ignorant they are of the gospel, how ill read and little versed in Christ. Yea, as Luther said, Take away sin, and ye take away Christ a Saviour of sinners. How little acquainted with and how great strangers to their own hearts are they in writing so. [To the Reader]