Tuesday, December 13, 2011

John Donne's Christmas Sermon excerpt

I wish you a Merry Christmas with this excerpt from John Donne's Christmas Sermon, December 25, 1624:

"...God made Sun and Moon to distinguish seasons, and day and night, and we cannot have the fruits of the earth but in their seasons: But God hath made no decree to distinguish the seasons of his mercies. In paradise the fruits were ripe the first minute, and in heaven it is alwaies Autumne; His mercies are ever in their maturity. We ask Panem Quotidianum, our daily bread, and God never says, you should have come yesterday; he never sayes you must againe tomorrow, but today if you will heare His voice, today he will heare you.

If some King of the earth have so large an extent of Dominion, in North and South, as that he hath Winter and Summer together in his Dominions, much more hath God mercy and judgment together; He brought light out of darknesse, not out of a lesser light; He can bring thy Summer out of Winter, though thou have no Spring; though in the wayes of fortune, or understanding, or conscience, thou have been benighted till now - wintred and frozen, clouded and eclypsed, damped and benummed, smothered and stupefied till now - now God comes to thee, not as in the dawning of the day, not as in the bud of the Spring, but as the Sun at noon, to illustrate all shadowes, as the sheaves in the harvest, to fill all penuries. All occasions invite His mercies, and all times are His seasons."

From Sermon Number LXXX (2) given at St. Paul's Christmas Day in the Evening, 1624.

No comments:

Post a Comment