Today's Puritan AUDIO Devotional:
Section 24. Luke 4:33-44, "Jesus Drives out an Evil Spirit, and Heals Many"
by J.C. Ryle, LISTEN to audio! READ text Download audio
You will find it helpful to READ the text--as you listen to the audio!
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One reason why the church has so little influence over the world
"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind!" Romans 12:2
I believe that one reason why the church has so little influence over the world--is because the world has so much influence over the church!
It is overwhelming to see the growing worldliness of the visible church. Many professed Christians--the Lord alone knows whether they are true believers or not--give us grave cause for apprehension. We see them tolerating practices which would not have been endured by their fathers; my blood chills when I think of how far some fashionable professors go astray!
When the Church descends to the world's level, her spiritual power is gone. Jesus said, "Preach the gospel to every creature!" But men are getting tired of the divine plan; they are going to be saved by the music, or by the theatricals, or by the amusements! Well, they may try these things as long as ever they like; but nothing can ever come of the whole thing but utter disappointment and confusion:
God is dishonored,
the gospel is travestied,
hypocrites are manufactured by thousands, and
the church is dragged down to the level of the world!
An unholy church! It is useless to the world--and of no esteem among men. It is . . .
Hell's laughter, and
"The world has absorbed the Church, and the church is content that it should be so!" Horatius Bonar
"Conformity to the world, in all ages, has proved the ruin of the church!" Rowland Hill
"The spirit of the world is eating out the very heart and life of true godliness!" George Everard
"Refined worldliness is the present snare of the Church of God!" Horatius Bonar
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If you are not attending a Sunday evening service tonight, we encourage you
to listen to this helpful sermon by Steve Lawson: "Evangelistic Preaching"
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