Thursday, March 13, 2008

not charity, but cruelty Charity to the souls of others, is the highest kind of charity. The soul is the most precious thing. It is a rich diamond, set in a ring of clay. This is charity to souls—when we see others in the bondage of sin—and we labor by counsel, admonition or reproof to pull them out of their dreadful estate, as the angels did to Lot in Sodom. "Hurry! Get out of here right now, or you will be caught in the destruction of the city! When Lot still hesitated, the angels seized his hand and the hands of his wife and two daughters and rushed them to safety outside the city!" Genesis 19. God made a law (Exodus 23:5) "If you see the donkey of someone who hates you fallen down under its load, do not leave it there; be sure you help him with it." On these words Chrysostom said, "We will help a beast which is fallen under its load—and shall we not extend relief to those who are fallen under a worse load of sin!" To let others go on in sin securely—is not charity, but cruelty! If a man's house were on fire, and another should see it and not tell him of it for fear of waking him—would not this be cruelty! And when we see the souls of others sleeping the sleep of death, and the fire of God's wrath ready to burn about their ears—and we are silent—is not this to be accessory to their death! If men wish to go to hell—and we do not attempt to stop them—is this love to their souls? (Thomas Watson, 1658, "A Plea for Alms." Public Domain as seen on Grace Gems.) This is quite similar to a cruel mercy quote I posted awhile back.

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