Wednesdays with Watson is a weekly reading taken from my favorite Puritan writer, Thomas Watson. This week’s selection is taken from A Body of Divinity.
[Meditate on the] mighty power and efficacy that the Word has had upon the souls and consciences of men.
It has changed their hearts. Some by reading Scripture have been turned into other men; they have been made holy and gracious. By reading other books the heart may be warmed — but by reading this book it is transformed. “You are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ, written not with ink — but with the Spirit of the living God.” The Word was copied out into their hearts, and they became Christ’s epistle, so that others might read Christ in them. If you should set a seal upon marble, and it should make an impression upon the marble, and leave a print behind, there would be a strange virtue in that seal; so when the seal of the Word leaves a heavenly print of grace upon the heart, there must needs be a power going along with that Word no less than divine.
It has comforted their hearts. When Christians have sat by the rivers weeping — the Word has dropped as honey, and sweetly revived them. A Christian’s chief comfort is drawn out of these wells of salvation. Rom 15:5, “That we through comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.” When a poor soul has been ready to faint — it has had nothing to comfort it but a Scripture cordial.
When it has been sick — the Word has revived it. “Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.”
When it has been deserted — the Word has dropped in the golden oil of joy. “The Lord will not cast off forever.” He may change his providence, not his purpose; he may have the look of an enemy — but he has the heart of a father. Thus the Word has a power in it to comfort the heart. This is my comfort in my affliction; for your word has quickened me.” As the spirits are conveyed through the arteries of the body, so divine comforts are conveyed through the promises of the Word. Now, the Scriptures having such an exhilarating, heart-comforting power in them — shows clearly that they are of God — and it is he who has put the milk of consolation into these breasts.