A deadly enemy!
(William Sprague, "Lectures on Revivals of Religion")
Beware of the world!
Everyone who has made much progress in the Christian life, has been taught by his own experience that the world is a deadly enemy to the believer's growth in grace.
The cares of the world are exceedingly apt to mar the Christian character.
But there are, in addition . . .
the pleasures of the world,
the honors of the world,
the riches of the world,
all of which in turn seize hold of the heart with a mighty grasp.
Sometimes the world laughs and scoffs at the Christian, and tries to persuade him that he is giving himself to fanaticism and folly.
Sometimes it flatters and caresses him, and by its artful blandishments, seeks to draw him aside from the plain path of duty.
Indeed the world will assume any form, or turn into anything, to draw the Christian away from God and from duty.
How important then that you be on guard against this dangerous enemy! Beware especially against the levities and amusements of the world; for this is the point at which you are most in danger.