The Bruised Reed – Part I-
So I will be writing about my thoughts, insights and lessons learned in this book, God willing, on Thursdays.
Chapter One. The Reed and the Bruising
Isaiah 42: 1-3 (ESV) says,
1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my Spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.
2 He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice,
or make it heard in the street;
3 a bruised reed he will not break,
and a faintly burning wick he will not quench;
he will faithfully bring forth justice.
This is our Christ, our Savior, Jesus who was bruised by God because of our transgressions; what an amazing thing it is to see the Triune God saving me; on the words of Sibbes, “The Father gives a commission to Christ; the Spirit furnishes and sanctifies to it, and Christ Himself executes the office of a Mediator. Our redemption is founded upon the joint agreement of all three persons of the Trinity.”
Sibbes (1577- 1635) writes a book that would not be found in Christian bookstores today; when he talks on how Christ pursues His calling towards “bruise reeds, and smoking flax; not trees but reeds; and not whole but bruise reeds”, I just can’t but think on how different this is from what is being preached in the churches nowadays. We hear that we are called to be oaks, never reeds, least bruised reeds.
Sibbes, describes a bruised man, as one who “by misery has been brought to see sin as the cause of it, for, whatever pretences sin makes, they come to an end when we are bruised and broken”. And here I had to stop, and re-read, and thought, on how many times I have believed those promises, false, vain pretences, that sin has offered me and I have believed; and how great the misery has been.
And when we sin, and grieve as the prodigal son, “this bruising makes us set a high price on Christ. Then the gospel becomes the gospel indeed; then the fig leaves of morality will do us no good. And it makes us more thankful…”
Chapter Two. Christ Will Not Break The Bruised Reed
This chapter is full of hope, true hope, but not for every one, but only for those that are poor in spirit, those who have been bruised by our Sovereign God.
Christ is the mediator, and “He will not break the bruised reed, nor quench the smoking flax… but he will cherish those with whom he so deals”
He chastise us, and humbles us, and bruises us because He is loving. Yes, He wants us to turn to Him, to be healed by Him, to see that all is grace, and His mercy is at hand.
But not only this, Sibbes, reminds us of the doctrine of the mortification of sin, and I already framed this words, “We must lay siege to the hardness of our own hearts, and aggravate sin all we can…but all directions will not prevail unless God by His Spirit convinces us deeply…then we will cry out for mercy.” War, if we have read some History, if we have seen the news, brings bruises, smoke, pain, death. We are in a war against our sin. We must expect bruising, and hurt. But in this war we have the Holy Spirit, strengthening us, saving us, sanctifing us.
Let us remember as we walk through the battlefield, “That there is more mercy in Christ than sin in us, there can be no danger in thorough dealing. It is better to go bruised to heaven than sound to hell”
I am waiting for my own book to arrive, but meanwhile, I printed these two chapters from the online version of the book. You can find it at Theology Network.
Tomorrow, Friday April 16, my sister will be starting a series on How to Teach the Word of God to our Children, please join us, I promise you will be blessed; and don’t forget to bring your cup of tea.