Brooks on Hell: Oh, bless Christ! Oh, kiss Christ!

Thomas Brooks is one of the greatest theologians of hell in Christian history. He remarks in “The Golden Key to Open Hidden Treasures,” that contemplating hell results in a greater love and appreciation for Christ:

If there be a hell, then, Christians, spend your days in admiring and in being greatly affected with the transcendent love of Christ, in undergoing hellish punishments in our steads. Oh pray, pray hard that you ‘may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height of that love of Christ which passeth knowledge,’ Eph. 3:18, 19,—of that love of Christ that put him upon these corporeal and spiritual sufferings which were so exceeding great, acute, extreme, universal and continual, and all to save us from wrath to come, 1 Thes. 1:10. Christ’s outward and inward miseries, sorrows, and sufferings are not to be paralleled, and therefore Christians have the more cause to lose themselves in the contemplation of his matchless love. Oh, bless Christ! oh, kiss Christ! oh, embrace Christ! oh, welcome Christ! oh, cleave to Christ! oh, follow Christ! oh, walk with Christ! oh, long for Christ! who for your sakes hath undergone insupportable wrath and most hellish torments, as I have evidenced at large before, and therefore a touch here may suffice. Oh, look up to dear Jesus, and say, O blessed Jesus, thou wast accursed that I might be blessed, Gal. 3:13; thou wast condemned that I might be justified, Isa. 53; thou didst for a time undergo the very torments of hell, that I might for ever enjoy the pleasures of heaven, Rom. 8:30, 34; Ps. 16:11; and therefore I cannot but dearly love thee, and highly esteem thee, and greatly honour thee, and earnestly long after thee; and this is all I shall say by way of inference.

Cited from Thomas Brooks, “The Golden Key to Open Hidden Treasures,” The Complete Works of Thomas Brooks, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart, vol. 5 (Edinburgh; London; Dublin: James Nichol; James Nisbet and Co.; G. Herbert, 1867), 141.