(J.C. Philpot, "A Longing Soul in a Thirsty Land")
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"What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul?
Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?" Matthew 16:26
Put your soul in one side of the scale—and put all that the world calls good and great in the other side. Think of everything that the heart of man can desire: riches, honor, pleasure, power. Heap it up well! Fill one side of the scale until there is no room for more. Put in . . .
all the gold of Australia,
all the diamonds of India,
all the delights of youthful love,
all the pleasures . . .
of wife and home,
of children and friends,
of health and strength,
of name and fame.
Put in all that the natural mind of man deems the height of happiness, and everything that may weigh this side of the scale down.
Now, when you have filled this side of the scale, put your soul into the other side—the state of your soul for all eternity. Represent to yourself your deathbed—hold the scale with dying hands as lying just at the brink of eternity. See how the scale now hangs!
What if you had the whole world that you have put into the scale, and could call it all your own; but at that solemn hour felt that your soul was forever lost—that you were dying under the wrath of God—and there was nothing before you but an eternity of misery! At such a moment as this, what could you put in the scale equal to the weight of your immortal soul?
Take the scale again. Put into one side, every affliction, trial, sorrow, and distress that imagination can conceive, or tongue express. Let them all be yours . . .
distress of mind,
pain of body,
poverty of circumstances,
contempt from man,
assaults from Satan,
Put into this side of the scale everything that makes life miserable—and then put into the other side, a saved soul.
Surely, as in the case of worldly honors, and riches, and happiness—a lost soul must weigh them all down!
So in the case of afflictions and sorrows and troubles—a saved soul must weigh them all down too!
"But God said to him" You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?" Luke 12:20