Friday, March 26, 2010

Shall we lean on human strength?

To wait on the Lord means... to go to him for all your strength, to be entirely dependent upon the spiritual power which comes from the Holy Ghost, and not at all upon the power which you fancy dwells within yourselves. All the strength that there is in any man by nature is perfect weakness as to spiritual things. I like the saying of a man who declared to his minister that God had done his part in his salvation, and he had done the rest. “Well,” said his minister, “What part did you do?” “Why,” said the poor man,” God did it all, and I stood in his way.” That is about all that you and I shall ever do in our own strength.

Human strength only opposes the work of grace until the divine strength comes in and sweeps our human strength away, and finds in our perfect weakness a reservoir into which the strength of God may pour itself, to fill us with the fullness of God. Dear friends, if there be anything you are persuaded you can do, and do well without your God, I would advise you to cease from it, because it must be in vain; no blessing can rest on it. If any man here imagines that he can preach a gospel sermon without the help of the Holy Ghost, he had better not try. If there be any man here who thinks he can live a holy life without the constant help of God’s Spirit, he will make a very unholy life of it.

From a sermon entitled "The Unwearied Runner," delivered April 16, 1869. Image by Abby Lanes under Creative Commons License.

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