Tuesday, January 13, 2009

285 Years Ago Yesterday

On January 12, 1723, Jonathan Edwards made a solemn dedication of Himself to God. It was one of the defining moments of His life. And I'll share the written vow in a moment.

Few people have left the kind of legacy that Jonathan Edwards did. He is famous for his sermons, including Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, that helped spark the Great Awakening. He graduated from Yale at 13 as valedictorian. After graduating, he is said to have studied thirteen hours a day. He also served as President of Princeton.

But the thing I find most impressive is that he spent one hour every evening with his eleven children. He prioritized his family and the results speak for themselves. Of his known descendants, more than 300 have become ministers or missionaries; 120 became university professors; over 100 became lawyers; 60 became prominent authors; there are 30 judges, 14 college presidents, 3 members of congress, and 1 vice-president.

How would you like to leave that kind of legacy?

Back to January 12, 1723. Edwards gave himself to God with these words:

I made a solemn dedication of myself to God, and wrote it down; giving up myself, and all that I had to God; to be for the future, in no respect, my own; to act as one that had no right to himself, in any respect. And solemnly vowed, to take God for my whole portion and felicity; looking on nothing else, as any part of my happiness, nor acting as if it were; and his law for the constant rule of my obedience.

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