Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the

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Author: Jonathan Edwards

Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the

Edwards, Jonathan, 1703-1758

"For he flattereth himself in his own eyes,
until his iniquity be found to be hateful." Psalm 36:2

In the foregoing verse, David says, that the transgression of the wicked said within his heart, "that there is no fear of God before his eyes;" that is, when he saw that the wicked went on in sin, in an allowed way of wickedness, it convinced him, that he was not afraid of those terrible judgments, and of that wrath with which God hath threatened sinners If he were afraid of these he could never go on so securely in sin, as he doth.

In our text he gives the reason why the wicked did not fear. It was a strange thing that men, who enjoyed such light as they did in the land of Israel, who read and heard those many awful threatenings which were written in the book of the law, should not be afraid to go on in sin. But saith the Psalmist, They flatter themselves in their own eyes: They have something or other which they make a foundation of encouragement, whereby they persuade themselves that they shall escape those judgments; and that makes them put far away the evil day.

In this manner he proceeds, until his iniquity be found to be hateful; that is, until he finds by experience that it is a more dreadful thing to sin against God, and break his holy commands, than he imagined. He thinks sin to be sweet, and hides it as a sweet morsel under his tongue: He loves it, and flatters himself in it, till at length he finds, by experience, that it is bitter as gall and wormwood. Though he thinks the commission of sin to be lovely, yet he will find the fruit of it to be hateful, and what he cannot endure. Proverbs 23:32. "At last it will bite like a serpent, and sting like an adder."

Here observe,

1. The subject spoken of is the WICKED MAN, of whom the Psalmist had been speaking in the foregoing verse.

2. His action in flattering himself in his own eyes; i.e. he makes himself and his case to appear to himself, or in his own eyes, better than it is.

3. How long he continues so to do, until his iniquity be found to be hateful. ’Which may be taken for his sin itself, the wicked will see how odious sin is to God’, when he shall feel the effects of his hatred, and how hateful to angels and saints; or rather the cause is here put for the effect, the tree for its fruit, and he will find his iniquity to be hateful, as he will find the hatefulness and feel the terribleness of the FRUIT of his iniquity.

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Chicago: Jonathan Edwards, "Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the," Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the in The Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner (New York: G. & C. & H. Carvill, 1830), Original Sources, accessed August 2, 2021, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=IEVTFYLWDS963AJ.

MLA: Edwards, Jonathan. "Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the." Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the, in The Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, New York, G. & C. & H. Carvill, 1830, Original Sources. 2 Aug. 2021. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=IEVTFYLWDS963AJ.

Harvard: Edwards, J, 'Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the' in Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, the. cited in 1830, The Vain Self-Flatteries of the Sinner, G. & C. & H. Carvill, New York. Original Sources, retrieved 2 August 2021, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=IEVTFYLWDS963AJ.