Friday, February 29, 2008

A word to backsliders

You have seen in Scripture a dreadful picture of a madman, where Nebuchadnezzar the king runs with oxen, and eats grass till his hair has grown like eagles’ feathers, and his nails like birds’ claws. Is he not the pitiful picture of a backslider; for what is a Christian when he plunges into sin but as one who makes himself like the beasts that perish, and who herds with the common, yea, and the unclean beasts of the earth? O believer! If it be a pitiful thing to see a man make himself a beast, how much more lamentable to see a Christian make himself a worldling! “Come ye out from among them; touch not the unclean thing.” Why should the soul of my turtle dove be given up to its enemies? Why should the lamb flock with the wolves? Come out, I pray thee leave this stygian filth, and be thou clean thou vessel-bearer of the Lord; come forth from the midst of that plague land, where thou canst get nothing but the ashy hue of leprosy, and be thou clean! Today the Lord invites thee; refuse not his invitation, but return ye backsliding children of men.

From a sermon entitled "Words of Expostulation," delivered January 20, 1861. Flickr photo by George Lu; some rights reserved.

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