Monday, January 21, 2008

Ruthlessness against sin

Christ will not allow us to spare a single sin. We may not select some favorite evil, and say, I will give my heart wholly up to God, but this vice is to be spared. Nay, nay, my hearers, ye are not Christ’s if ye have one tampered lust, one sin which you fondly indulge. Sin you will, even though you be Christ’s, but if you indulge sin, if you love it, and delight in it, if it is not to you a plague and a curse, you have no reason whatever to conclude that your name is on his breast, or that you belong to Christ at all. Suppose a house attacked by seven thieves. The good man of the house has arms within, and he manages to kill six of the thieves; but if one thief survive, and he permits him to range his house, he may still be robbed, perhaps still be slain. And if I have seven evil vices, and if by the grace of God six of these have been driven out, should yet indulge and pamper one that remaineth, I am still a lost man. I am not his so long as I willingly yield, and joyfully hold fellowship with a single evil and false thing. I contend not for creature perfection, I believe it to be impossible for us to attain it in the present life, but I do contend for perfection in purpose, perfection in design, and if we wantonly and wilfully harbour a solitary sin, we are no friends of Jesus Christ.

From a sermon entitled "Full Redemption," delivered April 22, 1860. Flickr photo by Christopher Walker; some rights reserved.

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