The Leopard!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"The Eye, A Similitude" #904. Psalm 17:8

Christians will too often indulge wrong
habits and tolerate doubtful customs,
until transgressions seem to them as
if they were unavoidable, and then
they persuade themselves that these
sins are harmless.

Never trifle with a sin because it
does not look so black or cause
such shame as some other iniquities.

There was a man who kept in his house
a leopard, a tame leopard, which had
been born in captivity, and had never
known what liberty was. It had grown
up as tame as a domestic cat, until one
day, when the master was asleep, it
gently licked his hand.

Now, it so happened that he had cut his
hand earlier in the day, and a little blood
oozed out as the creature's tongue was
drawn repeatedly over the wound.

The taste of the blood roused the wild
demon spirit of the beast at once, and
had it not been promptly shot, its once
beloved master would have been its victim!

In like manner those little household sins
which look not like the dreadful destroyers
that they really are, will one of these days
reveal their true nature, and you will have
to chase them from your soul, and drive
them to their native haunts!

It is not fit that they should lodge under your
roof. Chase them away before they put you
into greater danger! They must be doomed
or you will have no peace. They must be
destroyed, for your life is in jeopardy!

When the thief cannot break in at the
door himself, he finds a child, and puts
him through the little window, and then
the great door is speedily opened.

Thus do little sins open
the door for great sins!

We ought to become more and more jealous of
approximation or contact with anything that defiles,
abhorring the very trail of the serpent; shuddering
at even the appearance of sin; and loathing the
atmosphere that is corrupted by evil conversation.

"Lord, keep me from little things that
defile, and little flaws that disfigure or
utterly deface godliness of character."