When Will You Decide?
James Smith, 1856
In almost every congregation, a number of people are to be found, who appear to hear the Word very attentively, who take a certain degree of interest in the things of God--and and yet remain in an undecided state. They think . . .
of sin--but they do not forsake it;
of salvation--but do not earnestly seek it;
of Jesus--but do not receive him as God's unspeakable gift;
of Satan--but do not resist him;
of the world--but do not renounce it; and
of God--but do not seek to be at peace with him.
They are found in the same state week after week, month after month, and some of them, year after year!
Reader is this your state? If so, when will you decide? Decision is a duty--it is a duty which you owe to yourself--for true religion is happiness, safety, and honor. It is a duty you owe to others--for true religion leads us to love, pity, and strive to be useful to them. It is a duty you owe to God--for true religion embraces worship, holiness, and obedience. It is a duty you owe to the Lord Jesus--for true religion is faith in Christ, fellowship with Christ, and an imitation of Christ. It is your duty to decide immediately--for the best, the most important thing, should be attended to first--and nothing is as important as this. Time is short--and swiftly flies; opportunities are few--and once lost, they cannot be recalled; you have one opportunity now--but you cannot be sure that you will have another. Life is very uncertain--death may be standing at the door!
Besides, decision for God will . . .
prevent many evils,
secure invaluable blessings,
sanctify your sorest troubles, and
brighten your most cheering prospects.
If therefore you have any concern for yourself, any regard for your best interest, or any wish to please God--you ought at once to decide to be openly on the Lord's side. Give yourself to God upon your knees in private--then come and offer yourself for fellowship with Christ's church, and be an obedient disciple.
Confess the Lord Jesus with your mouth before the saints; believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead; walk blamelessly in all his ordinances and commandments--and you shall be saved.
Consecrate yourself to the Lord, and imitate the example set on the day of Pentecost; "Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day." Remember, the Savior commands baptism; primitive Christians have set you the example; the cause of Christ requires it; the saints ardently desire it; an honest enlightened conscience will call for it; and there are very precious promises made to it. Matthew 10:32; Romans 10:9, 10; Mark 16:15, 16.