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Evils of Self-will.

Evils of Self-will.

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
BY REV. EDWARD PATTESON, M.A.


2 Kings v. 11.

But Naaman was^ wroth^ and went away^ and said ;
beholdy I thought^ he will surely come out to me,
and standi and call on the name of the Lord his
God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover
the leper.
BY REV. EDWARD PATTESON, M.A.


2 Kings v. 11.

But Naaman was^ wroth^ and went away^ and said ;
beholdy I thought^ he will surely come out to me,
and standi and call on the name of the Lord his
God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover
the leper.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Aug 06, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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EVILS OF SELF-WILL. BY REV. EDWARD PATTESO, M.A. 2 Kings v. 11. But aaman was^ wroth^ and went away^ and said ; beholdy I thought^ he will surely come out to me, and standi and call on the name of the Lord his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper. If the pure and benevolent messengers of heaven take a kind interest, as we have reason to believe, in the well-being of mankind, it cannot be without a lively regret, that they observe the various shapes, in which the pride and vanity of the sons of Adam stand in the way of their happiness. Perhaps, with their compassion for our sufferings, they -^ cannot avoid mingling some feelings of anger at our wickedness, and contempt of our folly : but, the more severely their patience may be tried, when they see us at the same time so presum* 156 SERMO VIII. ptuous in our expectations of undeserved blessings^ and so blind to those^ which divine bounty has provided for us ; the more deeply must they la- ment the sad consequences of our errors. ot so, the wicked and refractory spirits ! To them it is most gratifying, to see, how near an approach to their own depraved nature may be found in some instances of human perverseness ; and how powerfully this tends, to render us, in the event, the wretched sharers of their fearful
 
destiny. Pride and ambition, Satan well knows, were the sources of his own rebellion, and tihe sole causes of his ruin. He feels, that it was no- thing but boundless and unconquerable pride, that first led him into sin ; — ^nothing but pride, that made him what he iiow is, and (which is no light portion of his punishment) will not suffer bim to forged what he once was. How highly, then, must this malignant spirit be delighted, to dee, what havoc the same fault is making with human happiness : — to see the inha- bitant of earth (destined by his Creator, if he will but accept it, to endless felicity) endued, likB himself, with such conceit and stubbornness, as EVILS OF SEI/P-WILL. may perhaps drive him hereafter to join the re- bellious angels in (he regions of endless misery ! What a harvest of sin and disobedieoce must he calculate upon raising from this prolific seed ! It is our great misfortune, that this arch-enemy, who is actually a spectator, and not an indifferent one, of all that passes upon earth, should be so well justified in this estimate of our danger. He has, in this case, his own fatal experience for his guide. The same qualities, he may reasonably conclude, if they be not vigorously restrained, must naturally work the same effects in us also : and he has measures ia view, to stifle those higher principles and better feelings, which, if they could work freely in our minds, would induce us to restrain them. Our nature, he knows, is some- thing lower' than his own once was; and our condition and circumstances afford numerous and (to us) perilous opportunities of putting us to the
 
trial, and bringing our sinful propensities into full play. i" But let us take care, for our own sake, to dis- ¦ " Thou nmdest liiin n litllc lower llian ibe Aiigeh. 168 tBRVO VIII. appoint his malice. Let as remember^ that we haTe promised '' manfully to fight under the banner of Christ against sin, the world, and tbe^ doTil."* Satan has, but too surely, many allies in^ the field. The world, with its alluring baits afkd glittering trifles ;— our own passions and appetites, #0 litUe used to be kept within due bounds ; — are all on his side. But neither are we, on our parta^ to seek for auxiliaries. Without, every pure and benevolent spirit is ready to support and succoor OS, AU the best and wisest of our fellow-meni themselves engaged in the same strife, and wltti the same stake at issue, are willing to help us with such counsel and comfort as they can aJfTord. But (what is far beyond all other support) within, we have the all-powerful aid — we need only to ask it — of Him, whom men and angels obey: who, from his celestial armoury, will lend us '^ the sword of the Spirit," and ^^ the shield of faith, 9^ wherewith we shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.'' • I have been particularly induced to lead you, • Eph. vi. 16. EVILS OF 8SI.F-W1LL.

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