“A Bruised Reed He Will Not Break”

Dear HLPC family,

This past Sunday I mentioned the blessing of the “Puritan Paperbacks” –a series of small paperback books published by Banner of Truth.  These are published works of some great English pastors of the 16th and 17th centuries.  (I was reminded that in addition to ordering them online, Gotwall’s Books on Watson Boulevard has a great selection—again, I don’t get a commission)! A specific book I mentioned was The Bruised Reed by Richard Sibbes.

The Bruised Reed was first published in 1630 and is Sibbes’ meditations on Isaiah 42 which is quoted in Matthew 12 and reads in part: a bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory; (Matthew 12:20).   Matthew’s gospel leaves us no doubt that this is speaking of Jesus.

Here’s a paragraph from The Bruised Reed:

“The eyes of our souls cannot be towards [Christ] unless he has cast a gracious look upon us first. The least love we have to him is but a reflection of his love first shining upon us. As Christ did, in his example to us, whatever he charges us to do, so he suffered in his own person whatever he calls us to suffer, so that he might the better learn to relieve and pity us in our suffering.  In his desertion in the garden and on the cross he was content to be without that unspeakable solace which the presence of his Father gave, both to bear the wrath of the Lord for a time for us, and likewise to know the better how to comfort us in our greatest extremities.  God sees fit that we should taste of that cup of which His Son drank so deep, that we might feel a little what sin is, and what his Son’s love was. But our comfort is that Christ drank the dregs of the cup for us, and will succour [assist or support] us, so that our spirits may not utterly fail under that little taste of this displeasure which we may feel. He became not only a man but a curse, a man of sorrows for us. He was broken that we should not be broken; he was troubled, that we should not be desperately troubled; he became a curse, that we should not be accursed. Whatever may be wished for in an all-sufficient comforter is all to be found in Christ.”

Your Pastor,