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The communion with the Son, on one hand consists of the Son’s free gift of himself to the Church.  The Church, in response, recieve the Son with complete “self-resignation of the soul”. Owen explains this:

On the part of the saints, it is their free, willing consent to receive, embrace, and submit unto the Lord Jesus, as their husband, Lord, and Savior,

There are two elements of this receiving. First, Christ is received for his “excellency”. Second, Christ is received as the only ground of salvation.

The first of these elements, reception of Christ as excellent as beautiful is much exhibited in the poetry of Edward Taylor (“Meditation on Canticle 2.1”):

No flower in Garzia Horti shines like this:

No beauty sweet in all the world so choice:

The Rose of Sharon sweet, that is

The fairest rose that grows in Paradise.

Blushes of beauty bright, pure white and red

In sweats of glory on each leaf doth bed.


This theme of the beauty and desirability of Christ was much in Puritan literature.  Here is an example taken from David Clarkson:


Acceptation. He will yield to any terms, so as the Lord will but grant his chief desires. Tell him, if he will have Christ, and follow him, he must forsake all; he embraces the motion, he says, This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation. He says with Mephibosheth, Nay, let him take all, if my Lord will return to my soul in peace. Tell him, if he will inherit the land of promise, he must come out of Egypt, he is content, he will not leave a hoof behind. All his lusts shall go, if Christ will but come, small and great, secret and open, pleasant and profitable; his Zoars, his little ones, shall be turned into ashes; his Herodias, his pleasant beloved sins shall be divorced. The best and fattest of the cattle, his profitable and gainful sins, shall be put to the sword, with the rest of the children of Amalek; his secret idols, those that are hid in the stuff, shall not only be buried, but, as Moses with the calf, ground to powder. Tell him, if he will be joined to Christ, he must forget his kindred and father’s house, his former old acquaintance and conversation; he is satisfied, so as the King will delight in his beauty, so as Christ will but take pleasure in him. Tell him, if he will have Christ as an intercessor, he must submit to him as a king; Oh, says he, if the golden sceptre may be but holden forth, I will submit to it for ever. Tell him, if he will have the Spirit of Christ, he must have him as a Spirit of grace, as well as a Spirit of supplication: he yields with cheerfulness; he looks upon holiness as garments of wrought gold, that which will both enrich and beautify him; the sanctifying work of the Spirit is acceptable to him, as well as the sealing work. Tell him, he that will name the name of the Lord with acceptance, must depart from iniquity: he answers presently, ‘What have I any more to do with idols?’ This Accepting Christ, and the Spirit of Christ, upon gospel terms, is called faith, John 1:12.