(2) When the produce which the earth, through the divine blessing, has yielded, is bestowed on individuals, and is possessed by them in their barns, in their houses, and at their tables. Those blessings are actually bestowed by God on individuals when they enjoy them, not as the bread of slothfulness, or of covetousness, or of deceit, or of robbery,–but when his providence enables them to obtain them by a just title. Those who possess them in any other way cannot be said to have them as a gift from God, bit as the fruits of wicked robbery. “The eyes of all wait upon thee; and thou gives them their meat in due season. Thou opens thine hand, and satisfies the desire of every living thing.”
(3) When he bestows all those things on believers, not from the ordinary love which he bears to mankind,1 but from a Fatherly love which he regards them in Christ. When the smallest crumb of bread, or drop of cold water, is bestowed, it becomes inconceivably preferable to all the delicacies of the rich. When those things are enjoyed as the earnest of better and heavenly blessings, “a little that a righteous man has is better than the riches of many wicked.” Herman Witsius, Dissertations on the Lord’s Prayer, (Escondido, California: The den Dulk Christian Foundation, 1994), 278. [Some spelling modernized; footnote value modernized; footnote content original; and underlining mine.]2)
XCV. Further, we should ascend by the creatures, as be an erect ladder, to God the Creator; who exhibits himself in them, not only to be seen, but also to be felt.2–whose glory the heavens declare,3 and to whom the brute animals of the earth, and the dumb fishes of the sea, bear witness, that they proceeded from his hand.4
XCVI. Nor is a general acknowledgment of this sufficient. But those perfections of God which he has brightly displayed in the work of creation, ought to be particularly observed:–that the infinite Power, at whose command all things rose into existence:–that unbounded Goodness, to which alone the creatures must own themselves entirely indebted for whatever portion of good is in them:–that unsearchable Wisdom, which has arranged every thing in so beautiful and order, that it appears no less admirable in the last than in the greatest works:–that amazing Philanthropy, in fine, which he has shown towards man, not only adorning his body by so exact a proportion of all its parts, which has beyond measure astonished Hippocrates and other anatomists; but also suspending his soul, as in the hidden vault of the temple, an image of himself and a representation of his own holiness; and at the same time, granting him dominion over the rest of the creatures. Herman Witsius, Dissertations on the Apostles’ Creed, (Escondido, California: The den Dulk Christian Foundation, 1994), 224-225. [Some spelling modernized; footnote value modernized; footnote content original; and underlining mine. [the "mine" there is David Ponter's underlining, not my underlining--CD]______________________
2Acts xvii. 27.