Christopher Love

“Christopher Love was a popular preacher in 17th century London, before his political leanings got him into trouble with Oliver Cromwell, and ultimately cost him his life. Even though he died at the early age of 33, he left behind a large body of work, most published posthumously by fellow minsters.” taken from the back of Preacher of God’s Word, Sermons by Christopher Love 1618-1651.

I am reading through the sermons in this book. He was a bold and straightforward preacher. Here are some excerpts. Taken from Christ’s Prayer the Saint’s Support (a sermon on John 17) is this doctrine

…”No man dies, but God takes him away. Were our lives in our own hands, we should live too long; and were our lives in our enemies’ hands, we should not live a day longer. But our lives are in God’s hands, and therefore we cannot die but God must take our lives away. And this may show a Christian his shelter under divine protection. A wicked man cannot thrust you out of the world. It may be that enemies bear you a grudge, and those who hate you may wish you a thousand deaths; yet here may be your comfort: you cannot die before God takes you out of the world.

In Scripture language, when men die they are said to be “gathered unto their fathers. “You shall live until God shall think fit to gather you to Himself, having made you fit for glory.”

Here is a section taken from his sermon, Directions Concerning Immoderate Joy for Worldly Comforts

…”Though Christians must take heed that they are not immoderate in their joy for worldly comforts, yet you must know that you are allowed by God to rejoice in the outward comforts that He gives you here in this world. Solomon says, “There is a time to mourn, and a time to laugh.” And “Go thy way, eat thy bread with joy, and drink thy wine with a merry heart, live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest.” So, “In the day of prosperity be joyful.” And “Ye shall rejoice in all that you put your hand unto.” This conclusion is necessary for sad and melancholy Christians, who, though they enjoy an affluence and confluence of worldly comforts, yet will not at all rejoice in them. Beloved, God allows you to rejoice.

Consider that religion does not extirpate or annihilate worldly rejoicing. Beloved, religion does not annihilate, but regulates your joys; nay, being religious rather increases than in any way diminishes your joys.”

Love was arrested along with other presbyterian ministers including Thomas Watson, for political treasaon. The others were released, but Love was sentenced to beheading.

Here are some of Love’s dying words at his execution…“There is but two steps between me and glory. It is but lying down upon the block that I shall ascend upon a throne. I am exchanging a pulpit for a scaffold and a scaffold for a throne. I am exchanging a guard of soldiers for a guard of angels, to carry me to Abraham’s bosom.”

Christopher Love’s works are republished by Soli Deo Gloria publishing.

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