All the sins of the saints!
(Thomas Brooks, "The Crown and Glory of Christianity, or, HOLINESS, the Only Way to Happiness" 1662)
"We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose!" Romans 8:28
All the afflictions, and
all the temptations, and
all the oppressions, and
all the oppositions, and
all the persecutions —
which befall a godly man, shall work for his good.
Every cross, and
every loss, and
every disease —
which befall the holy man, shall work for his good.
Every device of Satan,
every snare of Satan,
every deceit of Satan,
every stratagem of Satan,
and every enterprise of Satan
against the holy man, shall work for his good.
They shall all help to make him . . .
Every prosperity — and every adversity,
every storm — and every calm,
every bitter — and every sweet,
every cross — and every comfort,
shall work for the holy man's good.
When God gives a mercy — that shall work for his good.
When God takes away a mercy — that shall work for his good.
Yes, even all the falls and all the sins of the saints shall work for their good! Oh . . .
the zeal —
which God raises in the souls of His saints by their very falls! Oh the hatred, the indignation, and the detestation — which God raises in the hearts of His children against sin — by their very falling into sin!
Oh what love to Christ,
what thankfulness for Christ,
what admiration of Christ,
what cleaving to Christ,
what exalting of Christ,
what drawings from Christ's grace —
are saints led to, by their very falls!
It is the glory of God's holiness, that . . .
He can turn spiritual diseases — into holy remedies!
He can turn soul poisons — into heavenly cordials!
He can prevent sin by sin — and cure falling by falling!
O Christian! What though friends and relations frown upon you,
what though enemies are plotting and conspiring against you,
what though needs, like armed men, are breaking in upon you,
what though men rage, and devils roar against you,
what though sickness is devastating your family,
what though death stands every day at your elbow
— yet there is no reason for you to fear nor faint, because all these things shall work for your good! Yes, there is wonderful cause of joy and rejoicing in all the afflictions and tribulations which come upon you — considering that they shall all work for your good.
"We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose!" O Christians! I am afraid that you do not run so often as you should to the breasts of this promise — nor draw that sweetness and comfort from it, that it would yield, and that your several cases may require. I have been the longer upon this verse, because the condition of God's people calls for the strongest cordials, and the choicest and the sweetest comforts.