Their religion is hollow,
unsubstantial, and unreal
(From Winslow's, "Christ's Intercession for Tried Faith")
The most beautiful ritual,
the most accurate creed,
the most costly religion,
the most splendid profession,
without Christ in the heart,
is but as fuel preparing for the
final and eternal conflagration.
What, my reader, if your religion
should prove to be nothing but chaff?
Does the bare probability startle you?
Ah! there are multitudes whom it might well
startle; for multitudes are thus deceived.
Not a grain of saving grace is found in their souls.
no vitality in their faith,
no solidity in their profession,
no substance in their religion.
Before every wind of false doctrine they bend, and
by each blast of temptation they are carried away.
The stubble of the field, and the chaff of the
threshing floor (fit emblems of their profession),
are not more unsubstantial and fleeting than it.
All is woeful deception!
They have substituted....
a form of godliness for its power;
union to the church for union to Christ;
the baptism of water for the regeneration of the Spirit;
gospel ordinances for sanctifying grace;
works of benevolence for faith in the Lord Jesus.
And thus their religion is hollow, unsubstantial, and
unreal; possessing a "name to live, they are dead."
And what will be the end of such?
Departing into eternity in this state of soul deception;
building their hope of heaven upon this false foundation;
in their sad experience must be realized the awful
description which the evangelist gives of the judgment
power of Christ; "whose fan is in his hand, and he will
thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into his
barn; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire."
Thus will perish....
all human religions,
all false hopes,
all hollow professions,
all soul destroying doctrines;
the 'wood, the hay, the stubble,' of a
form of godliness, destitute of the power.