Sunday Sermon Quotes "Guard"

“We wander away when we express the anger we feel toward our spouse or children. We wander away when we covet the blessing of a friend. We wander away when we compromise biblical conviction for acceptance, for possessions, or for position. We wander away when we surrender to a moment of lust. We wander away when we doubt God and his goodness. We wander away when we have opportunity to be salt and light, but remain silent and inactive, when the cares of this world squeeze out a diligent pursuit of God. Wandering does not only refer to rank apostasy. Much of our wandering is subtle and unnoticed.” Paul Tripp

“In this book I am trying to retrieve an old awareness that has slipped and changed in recent decades. The awareness of sin used to be our shadow. Christians hated sin, feared it, fled from it, grieved over it. Some of our grandparents agonized over their sins…But the shadow has dimmed…As a child growing up in the fifties among Western Michigan Calvinists, I think I heard as many sermons about sin as I did about grace. The assumption in those days seems to be that you couldn’t understand either without understanding both. Many American Christians recall sermons in which preachers got visibly angry over a congregation’s sin. When these preachers were in full cry, they would make red-faced, finger-pointing, second-person plural accusations: You are sinners-filthy, guilty, miserable sinners!” Occasionally, these homiletical indictments veered awfully close to the second-person singular. Of course, the old preachers sometimes appeared to forget that their audience included sincere and mature believers. Such preachers were also capable of sounding self-righteous. Still, you were never in doubt about what these preachers were talking about. They were talking about sin. In today’s group confessionals it is harder to tell. The newer language of Zion fudges: “Let us confess our problem with human relational adjustment dynamics, and especially our feebleness in networking.” Or “I’d just like to share that we just need to target holiness as a growth area.” Where sin is concerned, people mumble now. Why should we speak up? Why retrieve the awareness of sin? Why restate the Christian doctrine of sin? The reason is that although traditional Christianity is true, its truth saws against the grain of much in contemporary culture and therefore needs constant sharpening. Christianity’s major doctrines need regular restatement so that people may believe them anew. Its classic awarenesses need to be evoked so that people may have them, or have them again. Recalling and confessing our sin is like taking out the garbage: once is not enough.” Cornelius Plantinga

“Sanctification does not prevent a man from having a great deal of inward spiritual conflict. By conflict I mean a struggle within the heart between the flesh and the Spirit, which are to be found together in every believer. A deep sense of that struggle, and a vast amount of healthy discomfort from it, are no proof that a man is not sanctified. Nay, rather, I believe, they are healthy symptoms of our condition, and prove we are not dead, but alive. A true Christian is one who has not only peace of conscience, but war within. He may be known by his warfare as well as by his peace.” J.C. Ryle

“Since each of us still has sin remaining in us, we will have pockets of spiritual blindness…The Hebrews passage clearly teaches that personal insight is the product of community. I need you in order to really see and know myself. Otherwise, I will listen to my own arguments, believe my own lies, and buy into my own delusions. My self-perception is as accurate as a carnival mirror. If I am going to see myself clearly, I need you to hold the mirror of God’s word in front of me.” Paul Tripp