"We know in part." 1 Corinthians 13:9
I. How astonishingly little do we know of God!
II. Are we not better acquainted with his works of providence, than
with his works of creation?
III. Are we able to search out his works of grace any more than his
works of providence?
IV. Several valuable lessons we may learn from a deep consciousness
of this our own ignorance.
1. The desire of knowledge is an universal principle in man,
fixed in his inmost nature. It is not variable, but constant in every rational
creature, unless while it is suspended by some stronger desire. And it
is insatiable: "The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear with
hearing;" neither the mind with any degree of knowledge which can be conveyed
into it. And it is planted in every human soul for excellent purposes.
It is intended to hinder our taking up our rest in anything here below;
to raise our thoughts to higher and higher objects, more and more worthy
our consideration, till we ascend to the Source of all knowledge and all
excellence, the all-wise and all-gracious Creator.
2. But although our desire of knowledge has no bounds, yet our
knowledge itself has. It is, indeed, confined within very narrow bounds;
abundantly narrower than common people imagine, or men of learning are
willing to acknowledge: A strong intimation, (since the Creator doeth nothing
in vain,) that there will be some future state of being, wherein that now
insatiable desire will be satisfied, and there will be no longer so immense
a distance between the appetite and the object of it.
3. The present knowledge of man is exactly adapted to his present
wants. It is sufficient to warn us of, and to preserve us from, most of
the evils to which we are now exposed; and to procure us whatever is necessary
for us in this our infant state of existence. We know enough of the nature
and sensible qualities of the things that are round about us, so far as
they are subservient to the health and strength of our bodies; we know
how to procure and prepare our food; we know what raiment is fit to cover
us; we know how build our houses, and to furnish them with all necessaries
and conveniences; we know just as much as is conducive to our living comfortably
in this world: But of innumerable things above, below, and round about
us, we know little more than that they exist. And in this our deep ignorance
is seen the goodness as well as the wisdom of God, in cutting short his
knowledge on every side, on purpose to "hide pride from man."
4. Therefore it is, that by the very constitution of their nature,
the wisest of men "know" but "in part." And how amazingly small a part
do they know, either of the Creator, or of his works! This is a very needful
but a very unpleasing theme; for "vain man would be wise." Let us reflect
upon it for awhile. And may the God of wisdom and love open our eyes to
discern our own ignorance!
1. To begin with the great Creator himself. How astonishingly little
do we know of God! -- How small a part of his nature do we know of his
essential attributes! What conception can we form of his omnipresence?
Who is able to comprehend how God is in this and every place? How he fills
the immensity of space? If philosophers, by denying the existence of a
vacuum, only meant that there is no place empty of God, that every point
of infinite space is full of God, certainly no man could call it in question.
But still, the fact being admitted what is omnipresence or ubiquity? Man
is no more able to comprehend this, than to grasp the universe.
2. The omnipresence or immensity of God, Sir Isaac Newton endeavours
to illustrate by a strong expression, by terming infinite space, "the Sensorium
of the Deity." And the very Heathens did not scruple to say, "All things
are full of God:" Just equivalent with his own declaration: -- "Do not
I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord." How beautifully does the Psalmist
illustrate this! "Whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I go into
the heaven, thou art there: If I go down to hell, thou art there also.
If I take the wings of the morning, and remain in the uttermost parts of
the sea even there thy hand shall find me, and thy right hand shall hold
me." But, in the mean time, what conception can we form, either of his
eternity or immensity? Such knowledge is too wonderful for us: We cannot
attain unto it.
3. A second essential attribute of God is eternity. He existed
before all time. Perhaps we might more properly say, He does exist
from everlasting to everlasting. But what is eternity? A celebrated author
says, that the Divine eternity is vitae interminabilis tota simul et
perfecta possessio: "The at once entire and perfect possession of never-ending
life." But how much wiser are we for this definition? We know just as much
of it as we did before. "The at once entire and perfect possession!" Who
can conceive what this means?
4. If indeed God had stamped (as some have maintained) an idea
of himself on every human soul, we must certainly have understood something
of these, as well as his other attributes; for we cannot suppose he would
have impressed upon us either a false or an imperfect idea of himself;
but the truth is, no man ever did, or does now, find any such idea stamped
upon his soul. The little which we do know of God, (expect what we receive
by the inspiration of the Holy One) we do not gather from any inward impression,
but gradually acquire from without. "The invisible things of God," if they
are known at all, "are known from the things that are made;" not from what
God hath written in our hearts, but from what he hath written in all his
5. Hence then, from his works, particularly his works of creation,
we are to learn the knowledge of God. But it is not easy to conceive how
little we know even of these. To begin with those that are at a distance:
Who knows how far the universe extends? What are the limits of it? The
morning stars can tell, who sang together when the lines of it were stretched
out, when God said, "This be thy circumference, O world!" But all beyond
the fixed stars is utterly hid from the children of men. And what do we
know of the fixed stars? Who telleth the number of them? even that small
portion of them that, by their mingled light, form what we call, "the milky
way?" And who knows the use of them? Are they so many suns that illuminate
their respective planets? Or do they only minister to this, (as Mr. Hutchinson
supposes) and contribute, in some unknown way, to the perpetual circulation
of light and spirit? Who knows what comets are? Are they planets not fully
formed? Or planets destroyed by a conflagration? Or are they bodies of
a wholly different nature, of which we can form no idea? Who can tell what
is the sun? Its use we know; but who knows of what substance it is composed?
Nay, we are not yet able to determine, whether it be fluid or solid! Who
knows what is the precise distance of the sun from the earth? Many astronomers
are persuaded it is a hundred millions of miles; others, that it is only
eighty-six millions, though generally accounted ninety. But equally great
men say, it is no more than fifty; some of them, that it is but twelve:
Last comes Dr. Rogers, and demonstrates that it is just two millions nine
hundred thousand miles! So little do we know even of this glorious luminary,
the eye and soul of the lower world! And just as much of the planets that
surround him; yea, of our own planet, the moon. Some indeed have discovered
yea, have marked out all her seas and continents! -- But after all, we
know just nothing of the matter. We have nothing but mere uncertain conjecture
concerning the nearest of all the heavenly bodies.
River and mountains on her spotty glode;
6. But let come to the things that are still nearer home, and
inquire what knowledge we have of them. How much do we know of that wonderful
body, light? How is it communicated to us? Does it flow in a continued
stream from the sun? Or does the sun impel the particles next his orb,
and so on and on, to the extremity of his system? Again: Does light gravitate
or not? Does it attract or repel other bodies? Is it subject to the general
laws which obtain in all other matter? Or is it a body siu generis,
altogether different from all other matter? Is it the same with electric
fluid, and others arrest its course? Why is the phial capable of being
charged to such a point, and no farther? A thousand more questions might
be asked on this head, which no man living can answer.
7. But surely we understand the air we breathe, and which encompasses
us on every side. By that admirable property of elasticity, it is the general
spring of nature. But is elasticity essential to air, and inseparable from
it? Nay, it has lately proved, by numberless experiments, that air may
be fixed, that is, divested of its elasticity, and generated or restored
to it again. Therefore it is no otherwise elastic, than as it is connected
with electric fire. And is not this electric or ethereal fire, the only
true essential elastic in nature? Who knows by what power dew, rain, and
all other vapours rise and fall in the air? Can we account for the phenomenon
of them upon the common principles? Or must we own, with a late ingenious
author, that those principles are utterly insufficient; and that they cannot
be rationally accounted for, but upon the principle of electricity?
8. Let us now descend to the earth which we tread upon, and which
God has peculiarly given to the children of men. Do the children of men
understand this? Suppose the terraqueous globe to be seven or eight thousand
miles in diameter, how much of this do we know? Perhaps a mile or two of
its surface: So far the art of man has penetrated. But who can inform us,
what lies beneath the region of stones, metals, minerals, and other fossils?
This is only a thin crust, which bears an exceeding small proportion to
the whole. Who can acquaint us with the inner parts of the globe? Whereof
do these consist? Is there a central fire, a grand reservoir, which not
only supplies the burning mountains, but also ministers (though we know
not how) to the ripening of gems and metals; yea, and perhaps to the production
of vegetables, and the well-being of animals too? Or is the great deep
still contained in the bowels of the earth? A central abyss of waters?
Who hath seen? Who can tell? Who can give any solid satisfaction to a rational
9. How much of the very surface of the globe is still utterly
unknown to us! How very little do we know of the polar regions, either
north or south, either in Europe or Asia! How little of these vast countries,
the inland parts either of Africa or America! Much less do we know what
is contained in the broad sea, the great abyss, which covers so large a
part of the globe. Most of its chambers are inaccessible to man, so that
we cannot tell how they are furnished. How little we know of those things
on the dry land which fall directly under our notice! Consider even the
most simple metals or stones: How imperfectly are we acquainted with their
mature and properties! Who knows what it is that distinguishes metals from
all other fossils? It is answered, "Why, they are heavier." Very true;
but what is the cause of their being heavier? What is the specific difference
between metals and stones? or between one metal and another? Between gold
and silver? Between tin and lead? It is all mystery to the sons of men.
10. Proceed we to the vegetable kingdom. Who can demonstrate
that the sap, in any vegetable, performs a regular circulation through
its vessels, or that it does not? Who can point out the specific difference
between one kind of plant and another? Or the peculiar, internal conformation
and disposition of their component parts? Yea, what man living thoroughly
understands the nature and properties of any one plant under heaven?
11. With regard to animals: Are microscopic animals, so called,
real animals or no? If they are, are they not essentially different
from all other animals in the universe, as not requiring any food, not
generating or being generated? Are they no animals at all, but merely inanimate
particles of matter, in a state of fermentation? How totally ignorant are
the most sagacious of men touching the whole affair of generation! Even
the generation of men. In the book of the Creator, indeed, were all our
members written, "which day by day were fashioned, when as yet were none
of them:" But what means was the first motion communicated to the punctum
saliens? When, and how, was the immortal spirit superadded to the senseless
clay? It is mystery all: And we can only say, "I am fearfully and wonderfully
12. With regard to insects, many are the discoveries which have
been lately made. But how little is all that is discovered yet, in comparison
of what is undiscovered! How many millions of them, by their extreme minuteness,
totally escape all our inquiries! And, indeed, the minute parts of the
largest animals elude our utmost diligence. Have we a more complete knowledge
of fishes that we have of insects? A great part, if not the greatest part,
of the inhabitants of the waters are totally concealed from us. It is probable,
the species of sea-animals are full as numerous as the land-animals. But
how few of them are known to us! And it is very little we know of those
few. With birds we are a little better acquainted: And, indeed, it is but
a little. For of very many we now hardly anything more than their outward
shape. We now a few of the obvious properties of other, chiefly those that
frequent our houses. But we have not a thorough, adequate knowledge even
of them. How little do we now of beasts! We do not know whence the different
tempers and qualities arise, not only in different species of them, but
in individuals of the same species; yea, and frequently in those who spring
from the same parents, the same both male and female animal. Are they mere
machines? Then they are incapable either of pleasure or pain. Nay, they
can have no senses; they neither see nor hear; they neither taste nor smell.
Much less can they now, or remember, or move, any otherwise than they are
impelled from without. But all this, as daily experiments show, is quite
contrary to the matter of fact.
13. Well; but if we know nothing else, do not we know ourselves?
Our bodies and our souls? What is our soul? It is a spirit, we know. But
what is a spirit? Here we are at a full stop. And where is the soul lodged?
In the pineal gland, in the whole brain, in the heart, in the blood, in
any single part of the body, or (if any one can understand those terms)
"all in all, and all in every part?" How is the soul united to the body?
A spirit or a clod? What is the secret, imperceptible chain that couples
them together? Can the wisest of men give a satisfactory answer to any
one of these plain questions?
And as to our body itself, how little do we know! During a night's sleep,
a healthy man perspires one part in four less when he sweats, than when
he does not. Who can account for this? What is flesh? That of the muscles
in particular? Are the fibres that compose it of a determinate size, so
that they can be divided only so far? Or are they resolvable in infintum?
How does a muscle act? By being inflated, and consequently shortened? But
what is it inflated with? If with blood, how and whence comes that blood?
And whither does it go, the moment the muscle is relaxed? Are the nerves
pervious or solid? How do they act? By vibration or transmission of the
animal spirits? Who knows what the animal spirits are? Are they electric
fire? What is sleep? Wherein does it consist? What is dreaming? How can
we know dreams from waking thoughts? I doubt no man knows. O how little
do we know even concerning the whole creation of God?
1. But are we not better acquainted with his works of providence,
than with his works of creation? It is one of the first principles of religion,
that his kingdom ruleth over all: so that we may say with confidence, "O
Lord our Governor, how excellent is thy name over all the earth!" It is
a childish conceit, to suppose chance governs the world, or has any part
in the government of it: No, not even in those things that, to the vulgar
eye, appear to be perfectly casual. "The lot is cast to the lap; but the
disposal thereof is from the Lord." Our blessed Master himself has put
this matter beyond all possible doubt: "Not a sparrow," saith he, "falleth
to the ground without the will of your Father which is in heaven: Yea,"
(to express the thing more strongly still) "even the very hairs of you
head are all numbered."
2. But although we are well apprized of this general truth, that
all things are governed by the providence of God; (the very language of
the heathen orator, Deorum moderamine cuncta geri) yet how amazingly
little do we know of the particulars contained under this general! How
little do we understand of his providential dealing, either with regard
to nations, or families, or individuals! There are heights and depths in
all these which our understanding can in no wise fathom. We can comprehend
but a small part of his ways now; the rest we shall know hereafter.
3. Even with regard to entire nations, how little do we comprehend
of God's providential dealings with them! What innumerable nations in the
eastern world once flourished, to the terror of all around them, and are
now swept away from the face of the earth; and their memorial is perished
with them! Nor has the case been otherwise in the west. In Europe also
we read of many large and powerful kingdoms, of which the names only are
left: The people are vanished away, and are as though they had never been.
But why it has pleased the almighty Governor of the world to sweep them
away with the besom of destruction we cannot tell; those who succeeded
them being, many times, little better than themselves.
4. But it is not only with regard to ancient nations, that the
providential dispensations of God are utterly imcomprehansible to us: The
same difficulties occur now. We cannot account for his present dealings
with the inhabitants of the earth. We know, "the Lord is loving unto every
man, and his mercy is over all his works." But we know not how to reconcile
this with the present dispensations of his providence. At this day, is
not almost every part of the earth full of darkness and cruel habitations?
In what a condition, in particular, is the large and populous empire of
Indostan! How many hundred thousands of the poor, quiet people, have been
destroyed, and their carcases left as the dung of the earth! In what a
condition (though they have no English ruffians there) are the numberless
islands in the Pacific Ocean! How little is their state above that of wolves
and bears! And who careth either for their souls or their bodies? But does
not the Father of men care for them? O mystery of providence!
5. And who cares for thousands, myriads, if not millions, of
the wretched Africans? Are not whole droves of these poor sheep (human,
if not rational beings!) continually driven to market, and sold, like cattle,
into the vilest bondage, without any hope of deliverance but by death?
Who cares for those outcasts of men, the well-known Hottenots? It is true,
a late writer has taken much pains to represent them as a respectable people:
But from what motive it is not easy to say; since he himself allows (a
speciman of their elegance of manners) that the raw guts of sheep and other
cattle are not only some of their choicest food, but also the ornaments
of their arms and legs; and (a specimen of their religion) that the son
is not counted a man, till he has beat his mother almost to death; and
when his father grows old, he fastens him to a little hut, and leaves him
there to starve! O Father of mercies! Are these the works of thy own hands,
the purchase of thy Son's blood?
6. How little better is either the civil or religious state of
the poor American Indians! That is, the miserable remains of them: For
in some provinces not one of them is left to breathe. In Hispaniola, when
the Christians came thither first, there were three millions of inhabitants.
Scarce twelve thousand of them now survive. And in what condition are these,
or the other Indians who are still scattered up and down in the cast continent
of South or North America? Religion they have none; no public worship of
any kind! God is not in all their thoughts. And most of them have no civil
government at all; no laws; no magistrates; but every man does what is
right in his own eyes. Therefore they are decreasing daily; and, very probably,
in a century or two there will not be one them left.
7. However, the inhabitants of Europe are not in so deplorable
a condition. They are in a state of civilization; they have useful laws,
and are governed by magistrates; they have religion; they are Christians.
I am afraid, whether they are called Christians or not, many of them have
not much religion. What say you to thousands of Laplanders, or Finlanders,
or Samoiedes, and Greenlanders? Indeed, of all who live in high northern
latitudes? Are they as civilized as sheep or oxen? To compare them with
horses, or any of our domestic animals, would be doing them to much honour.
Add to these, myriads of human savages that are freezing among the snow
of Siberia, and as many, if not more, who are wandering up and down in
the deserts of Tartary. Add thousands upon thousands of Poles and Muscovites;
and of Christians, so called, from Turkey in Europe. And did "God so love"
these, "that he gave his Son, his only begotten Son, to the end they might
not perish, but have everlasting life?" Then why are they thus? O wonder
above all wonders!
8. Is there not something equally mysterious in the divine lo
dispensation with regard to Christianity itself? Who can explain why Christianity
is not spread as far as sin? Why is not the medicine sent to every place
where the disease is found? But alas! It is not: "The sound of it is" not
now "gone forth into all lands." The poison is diffused over the whole
globe; the antidote is not known in a sixth part of it. Nay, and how is
it that the wisdom and goodness of God suffer the antidote itself to be
so grievously adulterated, not only in Roman Catholic countries, but almost
in every part of the Christian world? So adulterated by mixing it frequently
with useless, frequently with poisonous ingredients, that it retains none,
or at least a very small part of its original virtue. Yea, it is so thoroughly
adulterated by many of those very persons whom he has sent to administer
it that it adds tenfold malignity to the disease which it was designed
to cure! In consequence of this there is little more mercy or truth to
be found among Christians than among pagans. Nay, it has been affirmed
and I am afraid truly, that many called Christians are far worse than the
heathens that surround them: more profligate, more abandoned to all manner
of wickedness, neither fearing God, nor regarding man! O who can comprehend
this! Doth not he who is higher than the highest regard it?
9. Equally incomprehensible to us are many of the divine dispensations
with regard to particular families. We cannot at all comprehend why he
raises some to wealth, honour, and power and why in the meantime he depresses
others with poverty and various afflictions. Some wonderfully prosper in
all they take in hand, and the world pours in upon them; while others with
all their labour and toil can scarce procure daily bread. And perhaps prosperity
and applause continue with the former to their death; while the latter
drink the cup of adversity to their life's end -- although no reason appears
to us either for the prosperity of the one or the adversity of the other.
10. As little can we account for the divine dispensations with
regard to individuals. We know not why the lot of this man is cast in Europe,
the lot of that man in the wilds of America; why one is born of rich or
noble, the other of poor parents; why the father and mother of one are
strong and healthy, those of another weak and diseased; in consequence
of which he drags a miserable being all the days of his life, exposed to
want, and pain, and a thousand temptations from which he finds no way to
escape. How many are from their very infancy hedged in with such relations
that they seem to have no chance (as some speak), no possibility of being
useful to themselves or others? Why are they, antecedent to their own choice,
entangled in such connections? Why are hurtful people so cast in their
way that they know not how to escape them? And why are useful persons hid
out of their sight, or snatched away from them at their utmost need? O
God, how unsearchable are thy judgments or counsels! Too deep to be fathomed
by our reason: and thy ways of executing those counsels not to be traced
by our wisdom!
1. Are we able to search out his works of grace any more than his
works of providence? Nothing is more sure than that "without holiness no
man shall see the Lord." Why is it then that so vast a majority of mankind
are, so far as we can judge, cut off from all means, all possibility of
holiness, even from their mother's womb? For instance: what possibility
is there that a Hottentot, a New-Zealander, or an inhabitant of Nova-Zembla,
if he lives and dies there, should ever know what holiness means? Or consequently
ever attain it? Yea, but one may say: "He sinned before he was born, in
a pre-existent state. Therefore he was placed here in so unfavourable a
situation. And it is mere mercy that he should have a second trial." I
answer: supposing such a pre-existent state, this which you call a second
trial is really no trial at all. As soon as he is born into the world he
is absolutely in the power of his savage parents and relations, who from
the first dawn of reason train him up in the same ignorance, atheism, and
barbarity with themselves. He has no chance, so to speak; he has no possibility
of any better education. What trial has he then? From the time he comes
into the world till he goes out of it again he seems to be under a dire
necessity of living in all ungodliness lo and unrighteousness. But how
is this? How can this be the case with so many millions of the souls that
God has made? Art thou not the God "of all the ends of the earth, and of
them that remain in the broad sea?"
2. I desire it may be observed that if this be improved into
an objection against revelation it is an objection that lies full as much
against natural as revealed religion. If it were conclusive it would not
drive us into Deism, but into flat Atheism. It would conclude not only
against the Christian revelation but against the being of a God. And yet
I see not how we can avoid the force of it but by resolving all into the
unsearchable wisdom of God, together with a deep conviction of our ignorance
and inability to fathom his counsels.
3. Even among us who are favoured far above these, -- to whom
are entrusted the oracles of God, whose word is a lantern to our feet,
and a light in all our paths, -- there are still many circumstances in
his dispensations which are above our comprehension. We know not why he
suffered us so long to go on in our own ways before we were convinced of
sin. Or why he made use of this or the other instrument, and in this or
the other manner. And a thousand circumstances attended the process of
our conviction which we do not comprehend. We know not why he suffered
us to stay so long before he revealed his Son in our hearts; or why this
change from darkness to light was accompanied with such and such particular
4. It is doubtless the peculiar prerogative of God to reserve
the "times and seasons in his own power." And we cannot give any reason,
why, of two persons equally athirst for salvation one is presently taken
into the favour of God, and the other left to mourn for months or years.
One, as soon as he calls upon God, is answered, and filled with peace and
joy in believing; another seeks after him, and, it seems, with the same
degree of sincerity and earnestness, and yet cannot find him, or any consciousness
of his favour, for weeks, or months, or years. We know well this cannot
possibly be owing to any absolute decree, consigning, one before he was
born to everlasting glory, and the other to everlasting fire; but we do
not know what is the reason for it: It is enough that God knoweth.
5. There is, likewise, great variety in the manner and time of
God's bestowing his sanctifying grace, whereby he enables his children
to give him their whole heart, which we can in no wise account for. We
know not why he bestows this on some even before they ask for it; (some
unquestionable instances of which we have seen) on some after they have
sought it but a few days; and yet permits other believers to wait for it
perhaps twenty, thirty, or forty years; nay, and others, till a few hours,
or even minutes, before their spirits return to him. For the various circumstances
also which attend the fulfilling of that great promise, "I will circumcise
thy heart, to love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy
soul," God undoubtedly has reasons; but those reasons are generally hid
from the children of men. Once more: some of those who are enabled to love
God with all their heart and with all their soul, retain the same blessing,
without any interruption, till they are carried to Abraham's bosom; others
do not retain it, although they are not conscious of having grieved the
Holy Spirit of God. This also we do not understand: We do not herein "know
the mind of the Spirit."
Several valuable lessons we may learn from a deep consciousness of this
our own ignorance. First, we may learn hence a lesson of humility; not
"to think of ourselves," particularly with regard to our understanding,
"more highly than we ought to think;" but "to think soberly;" being thoroughly
convinced that we are not sufficient of ourselves to think one good thought;
that we should be liable to stumble at every step, to err every moment
of our lives, were it not that we have "an anointing from the Holy One,"
which abideth "with us;" were it not that He who knoweth what is in man
helpeth our infirmities; that "there is a spirit in man which giveth wisdom,"
and the inspiration of the Holy One which "giveth understanding."
From hence we may learn, Secondly, a lesson of faith, of confidence
in God. A full conviction of our own ignorance may teach us a full trust
in his wisdom. It may teach us (what is not always so easy as one would
conceive it to be) to trust the invisible God farther than we can see him!
It may assist us in learning that difficult lesson, to "cast down" our
own "imaginations" (or reasonings rather, as the word properly signifies),
to "cast down every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge
of God, and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ."
There are at present two grand obstructions to our forming a right judgment
of the dealings of God with respect to men. The one is, there are innumerable
facts relating to every man which we do not and cannot know. They
are, at present, hid from us, and covered from our search by impenetrable
darkness. The other is, we cannot see the thoughts of men, even
when we know their actions. Still we know not their intentions;
and without this we can but ill judge of their outward actions. Conscious
of this, "judge nothing before the time" concerning his providential dispensations;
till he shall bring to light "the hidden things of darkness," and manifest
"the thoughts and intent of the heart."
From a consciousness of our ignorance we may learn, Thirdly, a lesson
of resignation. We may be instructed to say at all times and in all instances,
"Father, not as I will; but as thou wilt." This was the last lesson which
our blessed Lord (as man) learnt while he was upon earth. He could go no
higher than, "Not as I will, but as thou wilt," till he bowed his head
and gave up the ghost. Let us also herein be made conformable to his death,
that we may know the full "power of his resurrection!"