Quoting J.C Ryle on prayer…
We live in days of abounding religious profession. There are more places of public worship than there ever was before. There are more people attending them than there ever was before. And yet in spite of all this public religion, I believe there is a vast neglect of private prayer. It is one of those private transcripts between God and our souls which no eye sees, and therefore one which people are tempted to pass over and leave undone.
I believe that hundreds of thousands never utter a word of prayer at all. They eat. They drink. They sleep. They rise. They go forth to their work. They return to their homes. They breathe God’s air. They travel on God’s earth. They enjoy God’s mercies. They have dying bodies. They have judgment and eternity before them. But they never speak to God. They live like the animals that perish. They behave like creatures without souls. They have not one word to say to Him in whose hand are their life and breath, and all things, and from whose mouth they must one day receive their everlasting sentence. How dreadful this seems; but if the secrets of men were only known, how common.
If I came across Osteen’s sermon notes and they read something like this I would be somewhat encouraged:
“Christianity which is from the Holy Spirit will always have a very deep view of the sinfulness of sin. It will not merely regard sin as a blemish and misfortune, which makes men and women objects of pity, and compassion. It will see in sin the abominable thing which God hates, the thing which makes man guilty and lost in his Maker’s sight, the thing which deserves God’s wrath and condemnation. It will look on sin as the cause of all sorrow and unhappiness, of strife and wars, of quarrels and contentions, of sickness and death–the curse which cursed God’s beautiful creation, the cursed thing which makes the whole earth groan and struggle in pain. Above all, it will see in sin the thing which will ruin us eternally, unless we can find a ransom,–lead us captive, except we can get its chains broken,–and destroy our happiness, both here and hereafter, except we fight against it, even unto death. Is this your religion? Are these your feelings about sin? If not, you should doubt whether your religion is “authentic.” – J. C. Ryle
HT Friends on FB for this quote.
Quoting J.C Ryle on Matt 1:2-4
…it is not always those who have most religious privileges, who give Christ most honor. We might have thought that the Scribes and Pharisees would have been the first to hasten to Bethlehem, on the lightest rumor that the Savior was born. But it was not so. A few unknown strangers from a distant land were the first, except the shepherds mentioned by Luke, to rejoice at His birth. “He came unto his own, and his own received him not.” What a mournful picture this is of human nature! How often the same kind of thing may be seen among ourselves! How often the very people who live nearest to the means of grace are those who neglect them most!
HT Reformed Quotes.
It is good to every so often sit down and examine yourself to see if you are walking right with God. No one says this better than J.C Ryle:
Let us all beware of resting satisfied with head knowledge.It is an excellent thing,when rightly used. But a man may have much of it,and yet perish everlastingly. ~ J.C.Ryle
Do not let your zeal for righteousness and holiness and personal sanctification wax cold.
Examine yourself my friend:
Resolve by the grace of God, if you love life, that you will have regular seasons for examining yourself, and looking over the accounts of your soul. “Stand, and see” where you are going, and how matters stand between you and God. Beware of perpetual hurried prayers, hurried Bible-reading, hurried church-going, hurried communions. Commune at least once a week with thine own… ~ J.C Ryle