Friday, December 18, 2009

What do we care about?

"What shall we eat? What shall we drink? and wherewithal shall we be clothed?” Let a man attend to his business, and what other care need he have? Let the working man go about his toil, and give a fair day’s work for a fair day’s wage, and what has he to do with the world to come? Let the merchant meet his bills, and keep clear of the bankruptcy court, and what has he to fear as to the court of heaven? Why need he worry his head about dying and rising again from the dead? The mass of mankind, though they will put up with religion, and will even show some sort of interest in it, and some decent respect thereto, yet have no more sense of its reality or its power than the swine that feed at a trough.

Look at these dense masses thronging the thoroughfares of this huge city, and answer me: Are not the most of them like the stones in Jordan’s* bed, dead and lifeless as to spiritual things? What care they for heaven or hell? What care they about the precious blood of Jesus, or about the power of the Holy Spirit? It is a great deal more important question to them what horse won the Derby, or what turf speculator gained thereby, than to ask who is going down to hell,
or who has an interest in the precious blood of Christ.

* - That is, the River Jordan.

From a sermon entitled "The Wall Daubed With Untempered Mortar," delivered May 31, 1868. Image by Andrew Turner under Creative Commons License.

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