The Resolutions of Jonathan Edwards December 27, 2017


Christmas and New Year are a time for family and fun. But for a believer it is a season of faith. A time to turn our eyes to Christ and to His work in our lives.

The holidays are to be more than a time for festivity. They are to be a time of reflection and worship. In fact, the word holiday comes from holy day. (Read more about that here.)

Appropriately this season is celebrated just before the dawn of a new year. The older I get the more this season becomes a time of reflection and preparation in my own heart. ‘Tis the season to be jolly?

‘Tis the season to search your heart!

‘Tis the season to rededicate your life!

‘Tis the season to draw near to God!

A new season will be upon us soon, and every season is meant to prepare us for the next.

Like many of you I try to spend the last days of the year identifying areas that need to change and actions that need to be taken in the coming year. Many people call them resolutions. Whatever you call them, it is perfectly appropriate to renew your holy resolve to follow Christ.

Perhaps the most convicting thing I have ever read about resolutions came from the pen of Jonathan Edwards. As a young man Edwards wrote 70 resolutions about his life. The first 21 were written initially and then he continued to add to the list from 1722-1723.

Three things strike me about the list:

  1. The resolutions are more about being than about doing. Most resolutions begin with something to accomplish. Edwards concentrated on heart issues.
  2. The resolutions were read over once a week. So many of our resolutions are soon forgotten. Regular reading will help us to remember.
  3. There is one resolution that seems to guide the rest. In fact, as I read through them again I noticed that the same resolution seemed to be repeated again and again. Though in slightly different words each time, Edwards chief resolution seemed to be that he wanted to live every hour as if it would be his last on earth.

The key to spiritual resolutions is that they must be made with an eye on eternity. Any day could be my last. Any moment Jesus could come. Any hour I could die. In light of this truth, how will I live my life?

The way to make the most of time is to think much of eternity.

As my final downloadable resource of the year, I would like to make available to you a portion of Jonathan Edwards’ resolutions. The front is beautifully designed to be displayed. Like Edwards, I hope it will serve as a weekly reminder of eternity. The back is blank for you to make your own list. You may want to place it in your Bible to see each day in your devotional time.

What will you do differently in the coming months?

Do not make your resolutions for the new year – make them for eternity!

Click HERE to download.

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