Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him

Oh! beloved, if the battle of salvation were to be fought by man alone, then you and I might throw down sword and shield and despairingly give it all up, for why should we waste our exertions in fruitless toil? But when we understand that the Spirit of God has laid bare his holy arm to save us, and that he worketh in us to will and to do of his own good pleasure, we are not afraid of the worst moment in the fight, we are not dispirited concerning the blackest hour of the conflict.

No; let the enemy rush forward with concentrated and infuriated force; let the powers of darkness and of inward corruption advance with malignant might, there is One who is greater than them all, whose standard shall arrest their onslaught. Let the evil spirit do his uttermost, for then shall we see what the Holy Ghost can do when the fullness of his power is displayed. We cannot expect to see God at his best unless we see the devil at his worst; but when our plight becomes the most dolorous, then shall our help become the most glorious; and when the creature is ready to die of despair, then shall be an opportunity for the Creator’s irresistible arm to put forth its energy and to glorify itself in us.

From a sermon entitled "The Standard Uplifted In The Face of The Foe," delivered October 28, 1866. Image by Nick Russill under Creative Commons License.

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