"But were mingled among the heathen, and learned their works."Ps. cvi. 35.
Pause, my soul, over this view of God's people of old. There is a natural disposition in the heart, to do and to live as others, in order to pass through life with as little reproach as possible; and, in the first face of things, what is called an innocent conformity to the world seems to be commendable and praiseworthy. But, alas! it is impossible to mingle with the carnal, and not to learn their works; and it is always dangerous to get on the confines of the enemy. In that blessed prayer, taught us by our Lord, we pray "not to be led into temptation;" and surely this implies, that we do not desire to lead ourselves into temptation. But this every child of God doth, that mingles unnecessarily with the world, or with the men of the world. The precept is positive to this purpose; "Come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing." And the blessing is as positive of the gracious effects that shall follow: "And I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty," 2 Cor. vi. 17, 18. My soul, do thou make a memorandum of this, for thou art too apt to forget it. How often hast thou been found in places and with persons, where the voice might have been heard speaking to thee, as unto the prophet, "What doest thou here, Elijah?" And often hast thou returned wounded from such society, where, to speak of him "whom thou lovest," forms no part in the conversation; but where the frivolous and unprofitable discourse too plainly testifies that "neither is God in all their thoughts." Precious Jesus! keep me, I beseech thee, from the heathen of every description and character, and suffer me "not to mingle with them, nor learn their works;" but let my whole heart be fixed on thee, considering how "thou didst endure such a contradiction of sinners against thyself," that I may be never weary nor faint in mind.From the POOR MAN'S MORNING AND EVENING PORTIONS.
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