Many suck poison from this sweet flower!
(by Thomas Watson)
There is no rowing to paradise except
upon the stream of repenting tears.
Till sin be bitter, Christ will not be sweet.
Some bless themselves that they have a
stock of knowledge, but what is knowledge
good for, without repentance? Learning and
a bad heart, is like a pretty face with a cancer
in the breast! Knowledge without repentance
will be but a torch to light the way to hell.
Repentant tears may be compared to myrrh,
which though it is bitter in taste, has a sweet
smell and refreshes the spirit. So repentance,
though it is bitter in itself, yet it is sweet in
the effects. It brings inward peace.
We are to find as much bitterness in weeping for
sin as ever we found sweetness in committing it.
Surely David found more bitterness in repentance
than ever he found comfort in Bathsheba.
Tears have four qualities: they are
moist, salt, hot, and bitter.
It is true of repenting tears, they are
hot to warm a frozen conscience;
moist, to soften a hard heart;
salt, to season a soul decaying in sin;
bitter, to wean us from the love of the world.
And I will add a fifth, they are sweet, in
that they make the heart inwardly rejoice.
David, who was the great weeper in Israel,
was also the sweet singer of Israel.
Be as speedy in your repentance as you
would have God be speedy in His mercies.
Many are now in hell that intended to repent.
Satan does what he can to keep men from
repentance. When he sees that one begins
to take up serious thoughts of reformation,
he bids them wait a little longer. It is
dangerous to procrastinate repentance.
The longer any go on sinning, the harder
they will find the work of repentance.
Delay strengthens sin, hardens the heart
and gives the devil fuller possession.
A plant at first may be easily plucked up,
but when it has spread its roots deep in
the earth, a whole team cannot remove it.
It is hard to remove sin when
it comes to be rooted.
The longer the ice freezes the harder it is to
be broken. The longer a man freezes in sin,
the harder it will be to have his heart broken.
Presuming upon God's mercy
can be eternally fatal. Many suck
poison from this sweet flower!
Oh, one says, "Christ has died; He has done all
for me; therefore I may sit still and do nothing."
Thus they suck death from the tree of life!
So I may say of God's mercy, it accidentally
causes the ruin of many. Because of His
mercy, some men presume and think they
may go on sinning.
The psalmist says, "there is mercy with God,
that he may be feared," but not that we may sin.
Can men expect mercy by provoking justice?
God will hardly show those mercy who sin
because mercy abounds.
Many would rather go sleeping
to hell than weeping to heaven.