Let each believer follow the precept of the Spirit—

Let each believer follow the precept of the Spirit—come apart for awhile  enter into the secret chambers of solemn retrospective meditation, and under the rays of heavenly light review his former state.

Now, through grace, he is light in the Lord; but formerly he was darkness, and how great was that darkness, how thick those scales which covered his spiritual vision! He had no knowledge of God as the Father of mercies and God of all grace. The Book of Life was to him a sealed book. It brought home to his feelings no moving, melting testimonies of redeeming love—the record of the Savior’s cross and passion seemed as some idle tale in which he had no interest, and in which, therefore, he took no delight. He did not believe that there was deep and solid reality in the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit to enlighten, renew, sanctify, and lead to Jesus. He regarded the humble professions of the saints of God as mere hypocrisy or delusion—neither heaven nor hell excited in him affecting thoughts of hope or fear. Darkness—gross darkness—enveloped all his perceptions of things invisible and eternal. He had no true knowledge of God—of Jesus—of the Spirit—of the Word—of holiness—of sin. He lived only for the things of time and sense; and so was rapidly hurried along the downward stream of time, to meet an unknown God in an unknown world, and to enter upon an unknown eternity.

O my soul, such was your former darkness! How dreadful, how terrible! Forget it not, set it distinctly before you; it will help you to rejoice more in your present light, for the Sun of Righteousness has risen upon you with healing in His wings. Therefore, arise, shine, and reflect from your bright armour of light the rays which fall upon you. Remember, that in former days not only utter darkness covered you, but that all your ways and works, all your thoughts and deeds, were one unbroken mass of iniquity and rebellion. Paul reminds the Colossians, “You, being dead in your sins, and the uncircumcision of your flesh, has God quickened together with Christ, having forgiven you all trespasses.” Oh! think seriously of this dreadful state—dead in sins. How humiliating the thought, that in those days, hatred to the holy, gracious God of your salvation filled every corner of your heart—that the ways of vital godliness were deliberately rejected by you—the ways of foul evil were deliberately chosen—that the language of your feelings was, Away with Jesus! I will not have Him to reign over me. Crucify Him! crucify Him! release unto me Barabbas. You joined with the children of Satan, who raised their haughty hands against the God of heaven, and who would gladly have torn Him down from His throne of righteousness. Remember, O my soul, such was your former state. But now you are alive unto God, and love Jesus, and rejoice in His salvation. How great the change! How great the grace! Give thanks with all the heart.          Henry Law, 1884 Extract from meditations

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