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Joy in Heaven Over Repenting Sinners.

Joy in Heaven Over Repenting Sinners.

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Published by glennpease

REV. EDWARD PAYSON, D. D.


There is joy hi the presence of the angels of God, over one sinner that re
penteth. — Luke zt. 10.

REV. EDWARD PAYSON, D. D.


There is joy hi the presence of the angels of God, over one sinner that re
penteth. — Luke zt. 10.

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Published by: glennpease on Jul 12, 2013
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02/22/2014

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JOY I HEAVE OVER REPETIG SIERS.REV. EDWARD PAYSO, D. D.There is joy hi the presence of the angels of God, over one sinner that repenteth. — Luke zt. 10.Though eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have enter-ed into the heart of man the things which Qod hath preparedfor them that love him, yet, for our encouragement and conso-lation, he has revealed them to us by his Spirit in his word.He there sets open before us the door of heaven, and invitesfaith to enter in, survey her future inheritance, and contemplatethe joys and employments of those happy beings, to a participa-tion of whose felicity she is conducting us. Let us, my hear-ers, comply with this invitation. Let us look in at the opendoor, which the condescending goodness of our God has set be-fore us ; feast our eyes with a view of uncreated glories, andrefresh our ears with the hallelujahs of the heavenly host If we have that faith which is the evidence of things not seen,and which enables its possessors to endure as seeing Him whois invisible, we shall see the eternal King bending forward onhis awful throne, and contemplating some object in this lowerworld with looks of ineffable complacency and delight Weshall see the Son of God, standing with open arms and a coun-tenance full of invitation, compassion and love; — we shall seeall heaven in a transport of joy, and hear its high courts re-sounding with the songs and praises of its blessed inhabitants.JOY I HBAVIK b it asked, what occasions their joy? A sinner, perhaps somesinner in this assembly, has just repented. This is the objectwhich God contemplates with complacency and delight ; for tothis man, says he, will I look, even to him that is poor, and of 
 
a contrite spirit, and that trembleth at my word. This is he,whom the Son of Qod opens his arms to receive ; for, whosoevercometh unto me, I will in no wise cast out This is what fillsheaven with new joy, and calls forth from angelic lips theirloudest songs of praise ; for he who came down from heavenhas assured us that there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth. This declaration of ourSaviour, naturally leads us to inqiure who rejoice, and whythey rejoice on such an occasion.I. Who rejoice?In answer to this inquiry, I observe,1. That God the Father rejoices over every sinner that re-penteth.That the infinite and ever blessed Jehovah, before whom allnations are as nothing and vanity, should rejoice in the repent-ance of a sinful worm of the dust, appears at first view, strange,and almost incredible. But however strange or incredible itmay appear, it is evident, both from bis declarations and hisconduct, that such is the fact.It is evident from his declarations. His word informs us,that when he saw that the wickedness of man was great uponthe earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of hisheart was evil continually, it repented him that he had mademan, and it grieved him at the heart. But if he was grieved atman's apostacy, he cannot but rejoice when any of our apostaterace repent, and return to him and happiness. Agreeably, wefind him most solemnly declaring, that he has no pleasure inthe death of the wicked, but that the wicked should turn fromhis way and live. After foretelling, by the mouth of hitprophets, the repentance and return of his ancient people, whohad forsaken him to worship idols, he says, — Then shalt thoube a crown of glory in the hand of die Lord, and a royal dia-dem in the hand of thy God ; for the Lord delighteth in theeand thy land shall be married ; and as the bridegroom rejoioethover the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee. For behold
 
I create Jerusalem a rejoicing and my people a joy, and I willOVER BKPBT1G 8IBB8. 237rejoice in Jerusalem and joy in my people. Sing, O daughter of Zion ; shout, O Israel ; be glad and rejoice with all thine heart,O daughter of Jerusalem, for the Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty ; he will save ; he will rejoice over thee with joy ; he will rest in his love ; he will joy over thee with singing.These striking declarations, addressed by Jehovah to his an-cient people, are equally applicable to penitent sinners in everyage, and undeniably prove that he rejoices in their conversion.That he does so is farther evident from his actions. Toglorify his grace in the salvation of sinners, has apparently beenthe great object of all his dispensations, from the fall of mantill the present day* It would be easy to show, that for thispurpose the world has been preserved, and the race of men con-tinued. For this purpose the various revolutions, wars andcommotions which stain the page of history have been over-ruled. But these are trifles. For this purpose God gave up hisonly begotten Son, and sent down the Holy Spirit from heaven ;and for the same purpose he is still sending forth his ambassa-dors to beseech sinners in Christ's stead to be reconciled tohimself. That he rejoices when they comply with the terms of reconciliation, is evident from the manner in which ho receivesthem, as represented to us in the parable of the prodigal son.o sooner does he perceive them returning from the service andways of sin, than he hastens to meet and welcome them;clothes them with the robe of his Son's righteousness ; putsupon them the ring of his everlasting covenant ; causes theirfeet to be shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace ;feasts them with the bread and water of life, and calls upon allthe inhabitants of heaven to rejoice with him, because his lostchildren are found.2. The Son of God rejoices over every sinner that repenteth.

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