Taste & distaste
(J. A. James, "The Young Man Leaving Home" 1844)
True religion changes the moral nature, producing . . .
a dislike and dread of sin, and
a love of holiness and virtue.
Piety is a spiritual taste; and, like every other taste,
it is accompanied with a distaste for the opposites
of those things or qualities which are the subjects
of its delight. Sin is that bitter thing which the soul
of a true Christian hates. It is the object of his
antipathy--and therefore of his dread. He turns from
it with aversion and loathing, as that which is offensive
and disgusting. It is not merely that he is commanded
by authority to abstain from sin--but he is led away from
it by the expulsive power of a new attraction. He may
have sinful propensities of his carnal nature--but he
resists the indulgence of them, for it is sin against God.
When you have once tasted the sweetness of true
religion--how insipid, how nauseous, will be those
draughts of 'wicked pleasure' with which the sinner
intoxicates and poisons his soul!
When you have acquired a relish for the pure,
calm, satisfying joys of faith and holiness--how
entirely will you disrelish the polluting, boisterous,
and unsatisfying pleasures of sin!
When you have once drunk of the waters of the river
of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne
of God and of the Lamb--how loathsome will be the
filthy turbid streams of licentious gratification!