Monday, November 21, 2016

Content in the Holy Spirit, Not Feelings

Feelings, no doubt, fill a most important office in our personal Christianity. Without them there can be no saving religion. Hope, joy, peace, confidence, resignation, love and fear, are things which must be felt, if they really exist.
But it must never be forgotten that there are religious affections, which are spurious and false, and spring from nothing better than animal excitement. It is quite possible to feel great pleasure, or deep alarm, under the preaching of the Gospel, and yet to be utterly destitute of the grace of God. The tears of some hearers of sermons, and the extravagant delight of others, are no certain marks of conversion. We may be warm admirers of favorite preachers, and yet remain nothing better than stony-ground hearers. Nothing should content us but a deep, humbling, self-mortifying work of the Holy Spirit, and a heart-union with Christ.
~ J.C. Ryle
Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: Luke volume 1, [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1986], 251, 252. {Luke 8: 4-15}

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