Well, trifle a little longer!
(Samuel Davies, "The Danger of Lukewarmness in Religion")
"I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were cold or hot. So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold—I am going to vomit you out of My mouth!" Revelation 3:15-16
Are lukewarmness and indifference a suitable temper with respect to a HAPPINESS far exceeding the utmost bounds of our present thoughts and wishes; a happiness equal to the largest capacities of our souls in their most improved and perfect state; a happiness beyond the grave, when all the enjoyments of this transitory life have taken an eternal flight from us; a happiness that will last as long as our immortal spirits, and never fade or fly from us?
Or are lukewarmness and indifference a suitable temper with respect to a MISERY beyond expression, beyond conception dreadful; a misery inflicted by a God of almighty power and inexorable justice upon all obstinate, incorrigible rebels for numberless, willful and daring provocations; inflicted on purpose to show His wrath and make His power known? A misery proceeding from the united fury of divine indignation, of the turbulent passions of a guilty conscience, of malicious tormenting devils? A misery (who can bear up under the horror of the thought!) that shall last as long as the eternal God shall live to inflict it—as long as sin shall continue evil to deserve it—as long as an immortal spirit shall endure to bear it—a misery that shall never be mitigated, never intermitted, never, never, never see an end?
And remember, that a state of eternal happiness or misery is not far remote from us—but near us, just before us! The next year, the next hour, or the next moment—we may enter into it!
Oh, sirs, does an apathetic, careless attitude befit us in such a solemn situation? Is a state of such eternal happiness—or such misery; is such a state which we must shortly enter—a matter of indifference to us? Oh, can you be lukewarm about such matters? Was such a exceeding stupidity ever seen under the canopy of heaven, or even in the regions of hell—which abound with monstrous and horrid beings? No! the vilest demons below cannot make light of these things! Mortals! can you trifle about them?
Well, trifle a little longer—and your trifling will be over, forever! You may now be indifferent about the improving of your time; but time is determined to continue its rapid course, and hurry you into the ocean of eternity, though you should continue sleeping and dreaming through all the passage!
Therefore awake, arise—before your doom is unchangeably fixed!
Let the criminal, condemned to die tomorrow, be indifferent about a pardon; let a drowning man be careless about catching at the only plank that can save him; but oh do not be careless and indifferent about eternity—and such amazing realities as heaven and hell!
If you disbelieve these things—you are infidels.
If you believe these things, and yet are unaffected with them—you are worse than infidels! Not even hell itself can find a precedent of such a conduct. The devils believe—and tremble! You believe—and trifle with things whose very name strikes solemnity and awe through heaven and hell.