Q&A: Puritan Quotes on Providence

Puritan Quotes on Providence

Question

Thanks for the Puritan quotes on salvation, self-examination, adversity, and atheism. I have a few more requests. Can you list some Puritan quotes in reference to providence?

Answer

You are most certainly welcome.

THOMAS WATSON - God is to be trusted when His providences seem to run contrary to His promises. God promised David to give him the crown, to make him king; but providence turns contrary to His promise; David was pursued by Saul, was in danger of his life; but all this while it was David's duty to trust God. The Lord does oftentimes, by cross providence, bring to pass His promise. God promised Paul the lives of all that were with him in the ship, but now the providence of God seems to run quite contrary to His promise; the winds blow, the ship splits and breaks in pieces; and thus God fulfilled His promise; upon the broken pieces of the ship, they all come safe to shore. Trust God when providences seem to run quite contrary to promises.

JOHN FLAVEL - Grace makes the promise and providence the payment.

SIR THOMAS BROWNE - Let not fortune, which hath no name in Scripture, have any in thy divinity. Let providence, not chance, have the honor of thy acknowledgments, and be thy Oedipus in contingencies. Mark well the paths and winding ways thereof, but be not too wise in the construction, or sudden in the application. The hand of providence writes often by abbreviatures, hieroglyphics, or short characters, which, like the laconism on the wall, are not to be made out but by a hint or key from that Spirit which indited them.

JOHN FLAVEL - We find a multitude of providences so timed to a minute, that had they occurred just a little sooner or later, they had mattered little in comparison with what now they do. Certainly, it cannot be chance, but counsel, that so exactly works in time. Contingencies keep to no rules. . . . The angel calls to Abraham, and, shows him another sacrifice just when his hand was giving the fatal stroke to Isaac (Genesis 22:1011). A well of water is shown to Hagar just when she had left the child, as not able to see its death (Genesis 21:16, 19). Rabshakeh meets with a blasting providence, hears a rumor that frustrated his design, just when ready to make an assault upon Jerusalem. (Isaiah 37:8).

JOHN FLAVEL - The wisdom of providence in our provisions. And this is seen in proportioning the quantity, not satisfying our extravagant wishes, but answering our real needs; consulting our wants, not our wantonness. "But my God shall supply all your need."

JOHN TRAPP - God made meat before mouths.

Other Puritan Quotes:

Salvation
Self-Examination
Adversity
Atheism
Providence
Election

Reference

Thomas, I. The Golden Treasury of Puritan Quotations (electronic ed.). Simpsonville SC: Christian Classics Foundation, 1996

Answer by Dr. Joseph R. Nally, Jr.

Dr. Joseph R. Nally, Jr., D.D., M.Div. is the Theological Editor at Third Millennium Ministries (Thirdmill).