Richard Sibbes on true bruising

Richard Sibbes, The Bruised Reed, 10-11, in discussing “spiritual bruising,” answers the question, “how shall we know whether we are such as may expect mercy?” with 8 descriptions which I found humbling and enlightening:

1) “By the bruised here is not meant those that are brought low only by crosses, but such as, by them, are brought to see their sin, which bruises most of all…. All lesser troubles run into this great trouble of conscience for sin.”

2) “A man truly bruised judges sin the greatest evil, and the favour of God the greatest good.”

3) “He would rather hear of mercy than kingdom.”

4) “He has poor opinions of himself, and thinks that he is not worth the earth he treads on.”

5) “Towards others he is not censorious, as being taken up at home, but is full of sympathy and compassion to those who are under God’s hand.”

6) “He thinks that those who walk in the comforts of God’s Spirit are the happiest men in the world.”

7) He trembles at the word of God (Isa. 66:2), and honours the very feet of those blessed instruments that bring peace unto him (Rom. 10:15).

8) “He is more taken up with the inward exercises of a broken heart than with formality, and is yet careful to use all sanctified means to convey comfort.”

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