Saturday, 6 September 2008

Minister: take heed to yourself (2)

Some more from Richard Baxter on why ministers need to keep a careful watch on their lives...

1. "You have a heaven to win or lose yourselves....O sirs, how many men have preached Christ and yet perished for lack of saving interest in Him! How many that are now in hell have told their people of the torments of hell, warning them to avoid it!"

2. " have a depraved nature and sinful inclinations, as well as weak, alas, are those that seem strongest! How small a matter can cast us down, by enticing us to foolishness, kindling our passions and inordinate desires, perverting our judgment, abating our resolutions, cooling our zeal, or interrupting our diligence."

3. "...because so great a work as ours puts men on greater exercise and trial of their graces.

4. "...because the tempter will make his first and sharpest attack on you. He bears those the greatest malice who are engaged to do him the greates mischief."

5. "...because there are many eyes upon you.....Although other men may sin without observation, you cannot."

6. "...becase your sins are more heinous than the sins of others....You are more likely to sin against knowledge...Your sins have more hypocrisy than those of other men...Your sin has more perfidiousnes in it than that of other men. You are more publically and solemnly engaged against it...."

7. "...because the honour of your Lord and Master, and of His truth and His ways, lies more on you than on other men...Would it not wound you to the heart to hear the name and truth of Godreproached on your account?"

8. "...for the souls of your hearers and the success of all your labours depend on it. If the work of the Lord is not deep and genuine in your own heart, how can you expect Him to bless your labours for the salvation of others?"