Christian Life

Helps to a Holy Lent – Fifth Wednesday

If ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; those which ye let remain of them shall be pricks in your eyes, and thorns in your sides, and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell.

Fight the good fight of faith. I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.                                                                                    We are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.

Never can it be well with us till we are heartily and boldly at work warring against all the enemies of the King. ‘It may be that one requires our first collected strength and almost undivided attention, but the others must not therefore have peace. We may leave them till they attack us, while we go forward to storm the fenced city of another,, but we must make no friendship with them, nor even let them come peaceably to us. our God, and we must be against them, or we cannot be wholly for Him.

We Christians are His soldiers, and must not shrink from carrying out His orders. If we make terms with sin, we are traitors to Him who requires that we should be ready even to resist unto blood, and proclaims, “He that findeth his life shall lose it; but he that loseth his life for My sake shall find it.” We cannot be as those who have not known Him and His will, nor even as those who rejected Him when they had only seen Him outwardly as the Son of Man, though of them He says that they hated the light, and came not to the light, lest their deeds should be reproved. If we hold off from opening ourselves to His searching, we are like them in not coming to the light; but we are worse, because we say we see, even in a sense in which they did not. They said, “We see,” thinking the light of the Law enough. We say we see the light of the Gospel.

Worse, then, will it be with us than with them, if we will not come to that light; for any affection we have toward the things it will reprove. Oh, let it shine full upon all your ways! Hold back nothing! Bring every thought, word, look, motion, under ifcs pure and searching light; and wink not when your most favorite fancies and pursuits are before it. Look them through and through, if by any means you may detect in them the least spot of the canker of sin, and when you have found it, magnify it in your own eyes by a concentrated attention as though with a microscope, till you can see its horrid and monstrous shape, and its incalculable growths and multiplications, and till you are not only emboldened to cast it from you, but loathe it, and loathe your very self for having borne it about you.

All that you can see is but a faint image of the malignity that inspires sin, of the spiritual wickedness against which you have to wrestle, and which sets itself utterly and wholly against God, and against all that is good and holy, and would turn the whole creation into loathsomeness and corruption. With this you take part, so far as you allow sin. For your soul’s sake, and for the love of your Creator, your Redeemer, your Sanctifier, beware of such fellowship!

Thou treadst upon enchanted ground; Perils and snares beset thee round; Beware of all; guard every part, But most, the traitor in thy heart. Come, then, my soul! now learn to wield The weight of thine immortal shield; Put on the armor from above Of heavenly truth and heavenly love.

O LORD, the great Physician of our mortal hurts and wounds, send, we beseech Thee, Thy salvation upon our weakness, that with Thee on our side and fighting for us we may overcome the assaults of the enemy, and, pouring forth all our tears and sorrows before Thee, may prevail against the motions of our sins; through Thy mercy who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost one God, world without end. Amen.


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