The Christian’s labor and Renewal- William Gurnall

by | Apr 7, 2021 | Quotes

The Christians work must be performed with an holy fervor, Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently. Psalm. 119.4. The word is emphatic, importing an exerting the utmost force of our souls. Zeal is the religious part of our affections, the first-born and strength of a man’s spirit, and therefore God sets it apart for himself, as his peculiar portion, fervent in spirit serving the Lord; without this, He accounts himself slighted, not served, and accordingly deals with such cold servitours, giving them as cold welcome as they do him service. Cursed is he that does the work of the Lord negligently; If we would repent, we must be zealous and repent, Rev. 2:2. if we hear the word, we must be swift to hear; if we pray, it must be an effectual fervent prayer, or else it is but a censure without fire. If we would give an alms, we must draw out our soul, as well as our purse to the hungry. Now those employments are counted most laborious, to which most strength and force must be put, and those which intend the powers of the soul, more than such as strain the limbs of the body; the Scholars labour in his study, is more spending, than the Plow-mans in the field. What then is the Christians labour, which exerts the zeal and heat of his spirit? O how hard is it to kindle, or to be kindled, to keep this heavenly fire alive, on a hearth so damp and cold as our heart is? Thirdly, the Christians work must be done from a right motive to a right end; First, a right motive from obedience to the will of God, and that such as springs from the love of God; he does not God’s work that does not obey him, and he does not obey him, that does not love him, that only being true obedience, which is hearty obedience. Ye have obeyed him from the heart; and that only hearty obedience, which is loving; for love has the regency of the heart, and it goes only where love carries it. O how hard is this, where there is so much of the slave, even in those that are children? where Hagar so oft overtops Sarah’s? A servile fear, over a filial affection; Secondly, it must be to a right end; it is in vain to wind up the watch, if it be not set to the right time, or to draw the Arrow (though to the head) if the Archers eye direct it not to the right mark. Zeal winds up and draws forth the powers of the soul, it makes the Christian act vigorously, and forcibly: but if sincerity (which is the singleness of the souls eye) be not present to direct it ultimately to the glory of God, it is not acceptable.