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and the way to the heart is through the ear: hear it, and ponder it, and inwardly digest it; commit it to memory, and become familiar with it. All this is good and necessary for a Christian's soul's health. But, brethren, beware of stopping at this point. Hear and read, and learn God's word, in order that you may do it — do the thing that it commands you.
Take it in this dark world as a lantern to light your steps, to guide you in the way wherein you should go. Apply it as the rule for shaping your life, your conversation, your behaviour, your general intercourse with the world. When you have read a chapter of the Bible, or listened to a sermon on some holy text, think what lesson there may be in it for your own especial use. Consider it well and silently by yourselves. Call in conscience to assist youcall in the help of God's Holy Spirit. For, as surely as you do this, you will be wonderfully enlightened. The page of holy scripture which you have been hearing will become to you a living page, telling you your own history, warn
of your own weakness, counselling you under your own difficulties, showing you your own sins, startling you sometimes, it may be, out of torpor and indifference, as Nathan startled David with the unexpected interpretation of his parable-Thou art the man ! This hast thou
done! Thou art verily guilty concerning thy brother!
That, my brethren, is the way to use holy scripture aright; to apply it to the discovery and correcting of your own faults; to use it for the regulation of your whole life; to learn from it, always with a view to your own practice, what God loves, and what He condemns.
That, I repeat, is the right method of hearing God's holy word. Thus does it become to those who turn to it profitable for all good-profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; making the hearer uise unto salvation, through faith which is in Christ Jesus !
Be ye, then, doers of God's word, and not hearers only.
and deceive not your own selves, by supposing that religion is a matter of feeling, or of outward form, or of profession only. It is a much deeper and truer thing than that. It is a matter of practice. To do you any good, it must influence your daily life, and temper, and conduct. It must purge out from you the old leaven, which is corrupt--the leaven of malice and wickedness; and leaven you with a new leaven—the leaven of the Gospel — justice, mercy, and truth. It must make you to be, in very deed, what you call yourselves —
Christ's disciples, by bringing you into conformity with Christ; making you like Him in patience, like Him in forbearance, like Him in generosityfor He gave His life a ransom for many; like Him in unselfishness and thought for others; like Him in His zeal for God, and great love for man. Ye are my friends, if ye do what I command you. If a man love me, He will keep my words-not, you will observe not, he will call me “Lord,” “ dear Saviour," and the like— but, he will keep my words!
And so it is all throughout the teaching of our Lord and His Apostles: we are charged to let our profiting appear— to show our faith by our works
to let our light shine before men— having heard the word in an honest and true heart, to keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience !
Then, once again let me say it, Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves!
Bury God's word deeply in your heart, that it may take root there and spring up, and bear fruit in your lives. Do not trust to your own strength for this; do not suppose that you can of yourselves, unhelped of God, do anything that is good. The first step in all true godliness is prayer; and by us who are Christians, all prayer must be offered through the one Mediator between man and God, Jesus Christ.
He has told us so Himself; told us in that same part of the Gospel which we have heard to-dayWhatsoever
shall ask the Father in my name, He will give it you. Ask and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full! Yes, ask and ye shall receive ! Ask of God, in the name of Jesus Christ, for power to do what God commands. Pray often that prayer which we have used today. Pray God to grant that by His holy inspiration, the inbreathing of His blessed Spirit, we may think those things that be good, and by His merciful guiding may perform the same; through our Lord Jesus Christ!
Ps. xliii. 13. (Prayer-Book Version.)
This God is our God for ever and ever: He shall be our
guide unto death.
To-Day, brethren, is Trinity Sunday, the Sunday which we keep year by year in honour of the Blessed and Adorable Trinity. It is a great and notable day in our Calendar. From now till the end of the Christian year all our Sundays are named after this Sunday-Sundays after Trinity.
And great and awful is the subject which this Sunday brings before us— the greatest and most awful of any. It is not a simple historical fact, like those which we commemorate on other great days of our Church ; like the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ on Christmas Day, or His death on Good Friday, or His resurrection on Easter Day, or the descent of the Holy Ghost on Whit-Sunday, that we have to do with now. It is the revealed truth