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their nature. You have disposed of your heart for the present. Then I say dispose of it finally. Detach it from the object it embraces to-day, if you ever mean to do it. Why let it clasp itself more closely to that from which you mean hereafter to tear it ?
I want you, to state the case in another form ; to decide to-day whether you can get along safely and happily through life, and death, and immortality, without Jesus Christ. Through life, alas, I know you can, for some of you have got almost through it without him. And yet not in every sense without him; without loving him and living to him, but not without many favors and much unrequited care and kindness from him ; but can you through death, and after death, amid the scenes and through the trials of the final day and so on immortally? Can you get along and get through safely and triumphantly without the conduct of this guide, the defence of this protector, the care of this good shepherd, the aid of this divine helper, and the ministrations of that friendship, which for its objects not only toiled, and wept, but even bled? Oh! can you ? Into what other hands can you with safety commit that inestimable and deathless soul? Have you not sinned ; and is there any remission of sin without shedding of blood; can any
blood cleanse from sin but his ; and can lis, without being applied ? I want you to decide this question to-day; you can do it; and it is time it were decided. If you can do without Christ, say so, and give him up. Let your final decision be made
There is no advantage in keeping the question open any longer. Give him up. Resign all
expectations from him. Repel his advances. Reject his proposals. Tell him that you want nothing of him. And when he says come, do you go. And yet “to whom will you go ?”
If your decision should be, however, that you cannot do without him, that you need his hand to lead, his arm to defend, and his blood to cleanse you, then this day apply to him, embrace and obey him ; commit your soul to him, and take his yoke upon you. Is it not reasonable? To put it off another day argues weakness, and involves ingratitude the most shameful, presumption the most daring, and danger the most imminent.
But to present the case under one other aspect, I want you to-day to decide this question, whether the present state of your heart and complexion of your character is such as accompanies salvation ; whether it be compatible with the favor of God, and consonant to heaven ; whether some great change be not necessary in your heart and character, in the affections of the one and the habits of the other to make the worship and service of God delightful to you, and heaven a fit and agreeable place to you ; whether you have not a deeper and different kind of repentance yet to exercise, and some sins which yet remain to be given up, and holiness to cultivate? It is right that you should decide this question today. If your decision be that no such change is necessary,
heart will answer as it is, and that your character will pass, that your affections and your habits are such as they should be, and that you have that holiness without which no man shall see
the Lord, or else that it is not necessary to the blissful vision of God, though an inspired apostle says it is; if this be your decision, as I should suspect it to be of many of you, judging from your unconcern and inactivity, give yourself no uneasiness about it; go on as you are going ; live just as you have been living
But if you should come to a different decision, if some change should appear to be necessary, then I say go about it immediately. You decide it must be done. You acknowledge it is not done yet; and you know it will never be done without you, though not done by you. If then, in view of this necessity, and in view of this fearful uncertainty of human life, and the hopelessness of any moral change after death, and the tremendous consequences of its being left undone forever, you can refuse to undertake it immediately, and will still put off, and be undecided, you may as well give up at once all pretensions to rationality, and conclude, when you are called up for trial at the bar of God, to put in the plea of insanity, and if you acted in other matters, as you do in religion, that plea would sustain you.
And now will you decide for the one part or the other? Will you be one thing or the other? Follow one of the opinions, be cold or hot, and not continue in that state of lukewarmness, nauseating even to God.
Will you choose God for your sovereign and portion, or some other? Will you decide for or against repentance?
Say, will you have this Christ or no? Behold he stands at the door ; he has knocked ; he has called ; and now he waits your decision. Say not, “I will by and by.” I had rather you would say, “I will not.” The former is a little more respectful than the latter, and that is all. Both mean the same;
and the first response has this disadvantage, that it deceives the person who makes it. He thinks that he only defers, when, in fact, he declines altogether. What is the difference, in reality, between “I will not” and “ I will not now," when now is the accepted time, and now is the day of salvation ?
What are you waiting for? To be willing ? You will be as unwilling the moment before you decide, if you ever decide for God, as you are now. Waiting for some impulse ? You will never feel it until you make the effort. Wait not then, but work, and interlace with all your efforts, prayer, hearty, honest, humble, fervent prayer.
Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
GALATIONS vi. 7.
Is it not strange that the Apostle should have thought it necessary to draw out into a formal proposition, a truth so obvious, and admitted as that whatsoever a man soweth, that and not something of a different kind he shall also reap? Is it not universally understood that the product of a field will be according to the nature of the seed sown in it? The contrary proposition involves an absurdity. Yet how gravely and solemnly he states the truth. And not only so, but prefaces it with a caution against selfdeception and trifling with God. “Be not deceived ; God is not mocked : for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Men are indeed very prone to deceive themselves; and there are many cases of gross self-deception, but is any one in danger of so egregiously deceiving himself as to expect from a sowing of seed of one kind, a reaping of grain of another kind ? Would you think it necessary to caution the least experienced farmer against harboring such an expectation? Why, then, does Paul so solemnly introduce and so formally express this truth, or truism, as I may call it. Because, though this proposition is assented to as expressing a truth in