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REVIVAL LECTURES - LECTURE IX. - MEANS TO BE USED WITH SINNERS. paragraph 44 On what particular points Christians are to testify for God - The manner in which they are to testify.

If a minister urges Christians to be holy, and to labor for Christ, they call it "legal" preaching. They say they want to hear the Gospel. Well, suppose you present the love of Christ. How will they bear testimony in their lives? How will they show that they believe it? Why, by conformity to the world they will testify, point-blank, that they do not believe a word of it, and that they care nothing at all for the love of Christ, only to have it for a cloak, that they can talk about it, and so cover up their sins. They have no sympathy with His compassion, and no belief in it as a reality, and no concern for the feelings of Christ, which fill His mind when He sees the condition of sinners.

 

 


IMPORTANT SUBJECTS - SERMON XI. REPROBATION paragraph 74 Jeremiah, 6:30.--"Reprobate silver shall men call them, because the lord hath rejected them."

6. There is reason to believe that there are many reprobates in the church. This is the probable history of many professors of religion. They had convictions of sin, and after a while their distress, more or less, suddenly abated. If their distress had been considerable; if the Spirit left them, their minds would naturally go toward the opposite extreme. When their convictions left them, they thought, perhaps, this was conversion; this very perhaps created a sensation of pleasure, and the thought that this felt pleasure was evidence that they were converted, would naturally increase their confidence. As their confidence increased, their joy at the thought of being saved would be increased. This selfish joy has been the foundation upon which they have built their hopes for eternity; and now you see them in the church, transacting business upon worldly principles, pleading for sin, and finding a thousand apologies for conformity to the world. They live on in sin, perhaps not openly vicious, but negligent of duty, cold and formal reprobates, and go down to hell from the bosom of the church.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 0
CONFORMITY TO THE WORLD

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 2

CONFORMITY TO THE WORLD.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 5

CONFORMITY TO THE WORLD.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 13

     It is meant that Christians are bound not to conform to the world in the three following things. I mention only these three, not because there are not many other things in which conformity to the world is forbidden, but because these three classes are all that I have time to examine tonight, and further, because these three are peculiarly necessary to be discussed at the present time. The three things are three departments of life, in which it is required that you be not conformed to this world. They are

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 20

     2. They are required not to conform to the world, because conformity to the world is totally inconsistent with the love of God or man.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 26

     5. Conformity to the world is such a manifest contradiction of the principles of the gospel, that sinners, when they see it, do not and cannot understand from it the true nature and object of the gospel itself.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 28

     6. It is this spirit of conformity to the world, that has already eaten out the love of God from the church.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 30

     7. This conformity to the world in business is one of the greatest stumbling blocks in the way of the conversion of sinners.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 86

     8. Christians ought to cease from conformity to the world in politics, from the influence which such a course would have on the world.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 124

     This is an objection often heard from worldly professors. But the minister that fears God will not be deterred by it. He will pursue the subject, until such professing Christians are cut off from their conformity to the world or cut off from the church. It is not merely the dress, as dress, but it is the conformity to the world in dress and fashion, that is the great stumbling-block in the way of sinners. How can the world be converted, while professing Christians are conformed to the world? What good will it do to give money to send the gospel to the heathen, when Christians live so at home? Well might the heathen ask, "What profit will it be to become Christians, when those who are Christians are pursuing the world with all the hot-haste of the ungodly?" The great thing necessary for the church is to break off from conformity to the world, and then they will have power with God in prayer, and the Holy Ghost will descend and bless their efforts, and the world will be converted.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 135

     1. By non-conformity to the world, you may save much money for doing good.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 137

     2. By non-conformity to the world, a great deal of time may be saved for doing good, that is now consumed and wasted in following the fashions, and obeying the maxims, and joining in the pursuits of the world.

 

 


TO PROFESSING CHRISTIANS 1836, LECTURE VIII - Conformity to the World paragraph 140

     You profess that you want to have sinners converted. But what avails it, if they sink right back again into conformity with the world? Brethren, I confess, I am filled with pain in view of the conduct of the church. Where are the proper results of the glorious revivals we have had? I believe they were genuine revivals of religion and outpourings of the Holy Ghost, that the church has enjoyed the last ten years. I believe the converts of the last ten years are among the best Christians in the land. Yet, after all, the great body of them are a disgrace to religion. Of what use would it be to have a thousand members added to the church, to be just such as are now in it? Would religion be any more honored by it, in the estimation of ungodly men? One holy church, that are really crucified to the world, and the world crucified to them, would do more to recommend Christianity, than all the churches in the country, living as they now do. O, if I had strength of body, to go through the churches again, instead of preaching to convert sinners, I would preach to bring up the churches to the gospel standard of holy living. Of what use is it to convert sinners, and make them such Christians as these? Of what use is it to try to convert sinners, and make them feel there is something in religion, and then when they go to trade with you, or meet you in the street, have you contradict it all, and tell them, by your conformity to the world, that there is nothing in it?

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1840 paragraph 802 754 Lecture XVI. Christians the Light of the World ...

3. The same is true of multitudes of professing Christians, in respect to their lives. For their worldly-mindedness, and for all forms and degrees of conformity to the world, they plead the force of public sentiment, that it will not do to differ from every body else, and that the law of expediency demands of them a good degree of conformity to the world, in order to secure an influence over them. But is this the way to enlighten the world? Instead of setting yourself to correct public opinion, do you suffer yourself to become the mere creature of it? Instead of opposing what is wrong in the views and practices of mankind, on every subject, do you fall in with them, and thus strengthen their bands, and confirm them in their darkness, expecting that by and by public sentiment will change so that you can do your duty without losing your influence, so that you can declare what God has done for your soul, relate your experience of the power of his grace, and hold up your light in the midst of the acclamations of the crowd? What a delusive dream is this!

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1840 paragraph 903 875 Lecture XIX. Temptations Must Be Put Away ...

12. Those who live in self-indulgence, and still think that they know and enjoy Christ, are deceived Antinomians. I have heard of some, who professed to come into the liberty of the gospel, decrying every thing that looked like self-denial and mortifying the flesh, as legal and belonging to Judaism, rather than to Christianity. Hence they indulge in the use of wines and strong drinks--their women indulge in dress, and flutter about after the fashions of this world; because, forsooth, they are now in a state of liberty, they spurn and despise a course of temperance, self-denial, and cross-bearing, of non-conformity to the world, as altogether a legal and self-righteous spirit and course of life. So did not Paul. So did not Christ. So does not any one who truly knows Christ.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1840 paragraph 904 875 Lecture XIX. Temptations Must Be Put Away ...

13. Many seem to understand the gospel as designed to purchase indulgence, instead of begetting self-denial. The gospel was evidently designed to enlighten the minds of men in regard to the value of heavenly things--to bring them out from under the dominion of the objects of sense, and engage their thoughts and their hearts, in the pursuit and enjoyment of spiritual objects; and thus to lead mankind to neglect the glitter and baubles of this world--to forgo pampering their appetites, indulging their passions, adorning their bodies, and floating on in the currents of this world. But many seem so entirely to mistake the true spirit and intent of the gospel, as to suppose it designed to sanctify conformity to the world, instead of entirely delivering the soul from it. With this understanding of the gospel some persons seem to be in a very wonderful state of mind. I heard, sometime since, of a young woman, a professor of religion, who was in the habit of cohabiting with a young man as if she had been his wife, and who, before retiring to her bed of iniquity and shameless lust, would kneel down, and very gravely thank God, that He allowed her such indulgences.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1842 paragraph 395 371 Lecture VI. Wisdom Justified of Her Children ...

6. One class of selfish minds are legalists. Having been convicted of sin, their selfishness takes on that peculiar type. They are, perhaps, remarkably strict in the outward observance of the Sabbath, and the ordinances of God's house. They seem to be always dissatisfied with themselves, and with every body else--vexed and harassed with the consideration that they do not meet the demands of their own conscience. They are always confessing their heart sins, but never forsaking them. Having no faith in Christ, they know nothing of gospel liberty. Not knowing what it is to eat and drink for the glory of God, their table becomes a snare and a trap, and a stumbling-block to them, They are uncomfortable themselves, and render those around them so. Cheerfulness looks shocking to them, and appears altogether like unbecoming levity. Encouraging any of the arts, appears to them like conformity to the world, and even the temperate enjoyment of such things as are requisite to health, comfort, and usefulness, appears to them inconsistent with benevolence. They do not seem to know that all these things are parts of benevolence, but look upon them as a spirit of self-gratification, just as a man who knows nothing in his own experience, of eating from any other motives than self-gratification, would not, of course, understand how others could do the same things only as they were influenced by the same motives.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1845 paragraph 311 269 Lectures VI. & VII.The Church Bound to Convert the World- No.'s 1 & 2 ...

9. Conformity to the world in almost every respect has been another great, and I may say, growing impediment to the world's conversion. This subject branches out in so many directions, I can but just name it.

 

 


THE OBERLIN EVANGELIST 1853 paragraph 491 465 Lecture X. Losing One's First Love ...

7. The same loss of first love is manifested often by conformity to the world, You may detect this in many ways. When a young lady begins to backslide, she will begin to put on ornaments, jewelry, and costly attire. These things are natural indications of the state of the heart.

Again you will see them taking more interest in other books than in the Bible, especially in books of a worldly sort. They prefer worldly to spiritual conversation. They entirely forget to pray for others than themselves, or than their nearest friends who are a part of themselves.

 

 


SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY (1851), LECTURE 75 - Reprobation paragraph 131

     6. There is reason to believe, that there are many reprobates in the church. This is the probable history of many professors of religion. They had convictions of sin, and after a while their distress more or less suddenly abated. If their distress had been considerable, if the Spirit left them, their minds would naturally have gone toward the opposite extreme. When their convictions left them, they thought, perhaps, this was conversion; this very perhaps created a sensation of pleasure, and the thought that this felt pleasure was evidence that they were converted, would naturally increase their confidence. As their confidence increased, their joy at the thought of being saved would be increased. This selfish joy has been the foundation upon which they have built their hopes for eternity; and now you see them in the church, transacting business upon worldly principles, pleading for sin, and finding a thousand apologies for conformity to the world. They live on in sin, perhaps not openly vicious, but negligent of duty, cold and formal reprobates, and go down to hell from the bosom of the church.