Monday, March 16, 2009

A life befitting the Gospel of Christ

We are delighted to preach good high doctrine, and to insist upon it that salvation is of grace alone; but we are equally delighted to preach good high practice and to insist upon it, that that grace which does not make a man better than his neighbors, is a grace which will never take him to heaven, nor render him acceptable before God....

The followers of any other religion, as a rule, are conformed to their religion. No nation has ever yet risen above the character of its so-called gods. Look at the disciples of Venus, were they not sunk deep in licentiousness? Look at the worshippers of Bacchus; let their Bacchanalian revels tell how they entered into the character of their deity. The worshippers to this day of the goddess Kale [Kali] — the goddess of thieves and murderers - the Thugs - enter most heartily into the spirit of the idol that they worship. We do not marvel at the crimes of the ancients when we recollect the gods whom they adored; Moloch, who delighted in the blood of little children; Jupiter, Mercury, and the like, whose actions stored in the classical dictionary, are enough to pollute the minds of youth. We marvel not that licentiousness abounded, for “like gods-like people:” “a people are never better than their religion,” it has often been said, and in most cases they are rather worse. It is strictly in accordance with nature that a man’s religion should season his conversation. Paul puts it, therefore, to you who profess to be saved by Jesus Christ, “Let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ.”

From a sermon entitled "The Gospel's Power In A Christian's Life." Image by Dawn Endico under Creative Commons License.

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