1 Timothy 3:16
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels…
1. It agrees to the main design of godliness.
2. It has a tendency to promote it.
3. It has the best influence upon it.
1. There is nothing in the mysteries of religion inconsistent with holiness to God, and beneficence to men.
2. The doctrines of Christianity have a tendency to promote all godliness.
3. The mysteries of religion have not only a tendency to promote godliness, but they give the best influence to it.
I. WHAT IS THE GODLINESS HERE MENTIONED? Looking into this will give us an argument for those doctrines that promote it.
1. One article of godliness, and indeed the chief of them is, that we should bow down, and worship, before the Lord our Maker.
2. Our likeness to God. Godliness is God's likeness.
3. Godliness consists in a communion with God, which is the exchange of love between Him and us.
4. This same godliness takes into it our expectation from God.
5. Godliness takes into it our regard to the Divine institutions.
6. Godliness takes into it our love to godly people.
7. Our usefulness to those who are yet without, is no small part of religion.
II. WE SHALL NOW INQUIRE HOW THIS GODLINESS, AS IT COMPREHENDS OUR DUTY TO GOD AND OUR BENEFICENCE TO MAN, IS PROMOTED BY THE MYSTERIES OF RELIGION.
1. Were it not for these mysteries we could not have had an open way to the throne of grace.
2. Another principle of godliness which the mysteries of religion do improve, is a reverence of the Divine Majesty.
3. It is in the belief of these doctrines that we feel the principles of our love to God, which are but the rebound of His to us.
4. We find by experience that this makes the worship of God our delight and pleasure.
5. In this revelation we have the greatest and best examples of our duty.
6. By this they were inspired with hope.
7. This has given good people a principle of charity to those that differ from them, and the truest value for those for whom they are agreed.I will close what you have heard with a short application.
1. If these are mysteries of godliness, then you see the true spring of the opposition that is made to them, not because they are above reason, but because they are against corruption, and hide pride from man.
2. Let us improve the doctrines of religion to this purpose, to make us better as well as wiser.
Parallel VersesKJV: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
WEB: Without controversy, the mystery of godliness is great: God was revealed in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen by angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, and received up in glory.