("The Mute Christian Under the Smarting Rod" or, "The Silent Soul with Sovereign Antidotes" by Thomas Brooks, 1659, London)
No man is the less loved by God, because he is tempted. Those whom God loves best — are usually tempted most. Witness David, Job, Joshua, Peter, Paul, yes, Christ Himself — who, as He was beloved above all others, so he was tempted above all others!
God had but one Son without corruption — but He had none without temptation!
Those who were once glorious on earth, and are now triumphing in heaven — have been severely tempted and assaulted by Satan. It is as natural and common for the choicest saints to be tempted — as it is for the sun to shine, the bird to fly, the fire to burn. The eagle complains not of her wings, nor the peacock of her train of feathers, nor the nightingale of her voice — because these are natural to them. No more should saints complain of their temptations, because they are natural to them.
"Our whole life is nothing but a temptation!"
The best men have been the worst tempted!
Temptations which are resisted and bewailed, will never hurt you, nor harm you.
Distasteful temptations seldom or never prevail. So long as the soul distastes them and the will remains firmly averse against them — they can do no hurt. So long as the language of the soul is, 'Get behind me, Satan!' the soul is safe.
It is not Satan tempting — but my assenting; it is not his enticing — but my yielding; which undoes me!
Temptations may be troubles to my mind — but they are not sins upon my soul — while I am in arms against them. If your heart trembles and your flesh quakes when Satan tempts — your condition is safe enough. If Satan's temptations are your greatest afflictions — his temptations shall never conquer you nor harm you!