You are never truly changed, till your hearts be changed; and the heart is not changed, till the will or love be changed. Fear is not the man; but usually is mixed with unwillingness and dislike, and so is contrary to that which is indeed the man. Though fear may do much for you, it will not do enough: it is oft more sensible than love, even in the best, as being more passionate and violent; but yet there is no more acceptableness in all, than there is will or love. God sent not soldiers, or inquisitors, or persecutors, to convert the world by working upon their fear, and driving them upon that which they take to be a mischief to them: but he sent poor preachers, that had no matter of worldly fears or hopes to move their auditors with; but had authority from Christ to offer them eternal life; and who were to convert the world by proposing to them the best and most desirable condition, and showing them where is the true felicity, and proving the certainty and excellency of it to them, and working upon their love, desire, and hope: God will not be your God against your wills, while you esteem him as the devil, that is only terrible and hurtful to you, and take his service for a slavery, and had rather be from him, and serve the world and the flesh, if it were not for fear of being damned. He will be feared as great, and holy, and just; but he will also be loved as good, and holy, and merciful, and every way suited to be the felicity and rest of souls.
– Richard Baxter, A Christian Directory
A summary of Paul’s address to the men of Athens: If you want to know the unknown God of metaphysics and philosophy, then come to know this Jewish man named Jesus the Messiah, whom God raised from the dead, and it is of utmost importance that you do, for He will judge you by this very same man.
This is truly an amazing thing our God has done; the more we meditate on just how world and life changing this is…this drives me to prayer each and everyday, for if my Creator did this for me, then there is no prayer He will not answer offered to Him in humility and desperate need in the Name of Jesus Christ, His Son, by the Spirit given to me, in whom I live move and have my being.
My prayer is that He will not hold anything back of Himself from me, for I willing give everything I am to Him without reservation…this is grace unspeakable and full of glory!