Key passage

At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and revealed them to infants. Yes, Father, because this was your good pleasure. All things have been entrusted to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son desires to reveal him.
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:25–30

Quotes from Chapter 10

Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me.

Matthew 10:37

Children ought to love the Lord Jesus Christ above all things in the world.1

Jonathan Edwards

There is no love so great and so wonderful as that which is in the heart of Christ. He is one that delights in mercy; he is ready to pity those those that are in suffering and sorrowful circumstances; one that delights in the happiness of his creatures. The love and grace that Christ manifested does as much exceed all that which is in this world as the sun is brighter than a candle. Parents are often full of kindness towards their children, but that is no kindness like Jesus Christ’s.

Jonathan Edwards

The first thing out of Jonathan Edwards’ mouth, in exhorting the kids in his church to love Jesus more than everything else this world can offer, is the heart of Christ. Edwards said it is spiritual beauty of which every other beauty is a shadow or echo.

Everything that is lovely in God is in Christ, and everything that is or can be lovely in any man is in him: for he is man as well as God, and he is the holiest, meekest, most humble, and every way the most excellent man that ever was.2

Jonathan Edwards

It is Christ’s gentle heart that adorns him with beauty; what most deeply attracts us to Christ is his gentle, tender, humble heart.

What is it about God’s glory that draws us in and causes us to conquer our sins and makes us radiant people? It is the loveliness of his heart. It is, he says, “a sight of the divine beauty of Christ, that bows the wills, and draws the hearts of men.”

We are drawn to God by the beauty of the heart of Jesus. The whole reason we care about sound doctrine is for the sake of preserving God’s beauty.

Let Jesus draw you in through the loveliness of his heart. It is a heart that is gentle and lowly. Let the heart of Jesus be something that is not only gentle toward you but lovely to you. Ponder him through his heart. Why not build in to your life unhurried quiet, where, among other disciplines, you consider the radiance of who he actually is, what animates him, what his deepest delight is?

There is no love so great and so wonderful as that which is in the heart of Christ.

Jonathan Edwards

Parents’ job is to show their kids that even their best love is a shadow of a greater love. Make the tender heart of Christ irresistible and unforgettable. We have the privilege of finding creative ways of drawing in the kids all around us to the heart of Jesus. His desire to draw near to sinners and sufferers is not only doctrinally true but aesthetically attractive.


  1. Jonathan Edwards, “Children Ought to Love the Lord Jesus Christ Above All,” in The Works of Jonathan Edwards, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses 17391742, ed. Harry S. Stout and Nathan O. Hatch (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2003), 171.
  2. Edwards, Works, 22:172.

Questions

  • What should children cherish more than anything else in the world? Does this apply only to children or to everyone?
  • How does Jonathan Edwards define the love of Jesus?
  • What is every beauty in this world a shadow of?
  • What most deeply attracts us to Christ?
  • Why is sound doctrine important?
  • What is parents’ job? Is this responsibility only for parents?
  • What does Christ’s heart reveal?
  • What does Christ’s heart indicate for Christians?
  • How can you live in this reality?
  • Ponder Christ’s heart. How does Christ respond to your heart? How do you respond to Him?

This article is adapted from: Gentle and Lowly by Dane Ortlund and Gentle and Lowly Study Guide by Robert Zink.