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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

False Convert Detected (Part 7)

Following is the final instalment from Thomas Shepard (1605-1649) on The False Convert Detected.

"IV. Presumption, or False Faith.

This is the last and most dangerous rock that these times are split upon. When men see an insufficiency in all duties to help them, and themselves unworthy of mercy, they make a bridge of their own to carry them to Christ. I mean, they look not for faith wrought by an omnipotent power, which the eternal Spirit of the Lord Jesus must work in them; but they content themselves with a faith of their own forging and framing: and hence they think and believe that Christ is their sweet Saviour, and so doubt not but they are safe, when there is no such matter. All men are of this opinion, that there is no salvation but by the merits of Jesus Christ; and because they hold fast this opinion, therefore they think they hold fast Jesus Christ in the hand of faith, and so perish hanging on their own fancy and shadow. Some others catch hold of Christ before they come to feel the want of faith and ability to believe, and catching hold on him (like dust on a man's coat, whom God will shake off, now they say, they thank God they have got comfort by this means, and though God killeth them, yet they will trust unto him, Micah 3:11. This hope damns thousands.

Faith is 'a precious faith,' 2 Pet.1:2. Precious things cost much, and we set them at a high rate: if thy faith be so, it has cost thee many a prayer, many a sob, many a tear. But ask most men how they came by their faith in Christ, the say, very easily. When the lion sleeps, a man may lie and sleep, by it; but when it awakens, wo to that man: so while God is silent and patient, thou mayest befool thyself with thinking thou dost trust unto God; but wo to thee when the Lord appears in his wrath! Many of you trust to Christ, as the apricock-tree, that leans against the wall, but its fast rooted in the earth: so you lean upon Christ for salvation, but you are rooted in the world, rooted in your pride still. Wo to you if you perish in this estate, God will hew you down as fuel for his wrath. This therefore I proclaim from the God of heaven—

(1. You that never felt yourselves as unable to believe as a dead man to raise himself, you have as yet no faith at all.

(2. You that would get faith, first must feel your inability to believe: and fetch not this slip out of thine own garden; it must come down from Heaven to thy soul, if ever thou partakest thereof."

So ends a tough sermon from Thomas Shepard, Puritan.

Biblical Creationists are not without their secret sins. They ought examine themselves. How do they regard their sins? Thomas Shepard gives vital advice.

Those who call themselves Christian and who are not Biblical Creationist have their secret sins as well but they have this known sin - unbelief - the direct utterance of God is set before them in Exodus 20:11 yet they continue to doubt God to trust the world. Come out of the world for the sake of your soul. Trust God though he permit you to be pressed by the sea on one side and advancing Pharoah on the other. Stand still and wait on the Lord lest you perish, lest you be found, in the end, a false convert!

Sam Drucker

Sam Drucker

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