It is not enough that we go to church and hear sermons. We may do so for fifty years, and be nothing better, but rather worse. “Take heed,” says our Lord, “how you hear.” Would any one know how to hear properly? Then let them lay to heart three simple rules.
We must run with patience, or we shall never obtain. There may be many things we cannot understand, much that the flesh could perhaps wish otherwise, but let us endure unto the end, and all shall be made clear, and God’s arrangements shall be proved best.
Think, you who take comfort in some fancied ideas of your own goodness – think, you who wrap up yourselves in the notion, “all must be right, if I keep to my Church,” – think for a moment what a sandy foundation you are building upon!
“Let us beware of any hope that does not exercise a sanctifying influence over our hearts, lives, tastes, conduct, and conversation. It is a hope that never came down from above. It is mere base metal, and counterfeit coin. It lacks the mint-stamp of the Holy Ghost, and will never pass current in heaven.
I want people to fill their minds with passages of Scripture while they are well and strong, that they may have sure help in the day of need. I want them to be diligent in studying their Bibles, and becoming familiar with their contents, in order that the grand old Book may stand by them and talk with them when all earthly friends fail.
“Let us watch against pride in every shape – pride of intellect, pride of wealth, pride of our own goodness. Nothing is so likely to keep a man out of heaven, and prevent him from seeing Christ, as pride. So long as we think we are something we shall never be saved. Let us pray for and cultivate humility; let us seek to know ourselves correctly, and to find out our place in the sight of a holy God.”
Let it never be forgotten that the material part of a Christian Church is by far the least important part of it. The fairest combinations of marble, stone, wood and painted glass, are worthless in God’s sight, unless there is truth in the pulpit and grace in the congregation.
There is such a place as hell. Let no one deceive you with vain words. What people do not like, they try hard not to believe. When the Lord Jesus Christ comes to judge the world, He will punish all who are not His disciples with a fearful punishment: