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“Two things urgently needed in ministers, if they would attempt great advances for the kingdom of Christ, are zeal and resolve.  Their influence and power for impact are greater than we think.  A man of ordinary abilities will accomplish more with zeal and resolve than a man ten times more gifted without zeal and resolve. . . .  Men who are possessed by these qualities commonly carry the day in almost all affairs.  Most of the great things that have been done in the world, the great revolutions that have been accomplished in the kingdoms and empires of the earth, have been primarily owing to zeal and resolve.   The very appearance of an intensely engaged spirit, together with a fearless courage and unyielding resolve, in any person that has undertaken leadership in any human affair goes a long way toward accomplishing the intended outcome. . . .  When people see a high degree of zeal and resolve in a person, it awes them and has a commanding influence upon them. . . .  But while we are cold and heartless and only go on in a dull manner, in an old formal round, we will never accomplish anything great.  Our efforts, when they display such coldness and irresolution, will not even make people think of yielding. . . .  The appearance of such indifference and cowardice does, as it were, provoke opposition.”

Jonathan Edwards, “What must be done more directly to advance this work [of revival],” in Works (Edinburgh, 1979), I:424.  Wording updated.

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One thought on “How to promote the great work of Christ in our time”

  1. Shannon says:

    This quote struck me in significant way as I read it this morning. It is a great encouragement and challenge to me, to help when I am discouraged about the limitations of my abilities but also to motivate me to greater things for the glory of Christ and the true good of many. Thank you Dr. Ortlund.

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Ray Ortlund

Ray Ortlund is senior pastor of Immanuel Church in Nashville, Tennessee, and serves as a Council member with The Gospel Coalition. You can follow him on Twitter.

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