Proverbs For Living

  • The coming of the Lord draweth nigh.  Behold, the Judge standeth at the door.  The end of all things is at hand.  This I say, brethren, the time is short.  It is the last time. Surely, I come quickly.  Let these sayings be ever in my mind, to chill the ardor of earthly pursuits, and inflame my zeal for heaven.
  • The luxuries of the table and the cup breed bodily diseases, feed bad tempers, and paralyze the intellects.
  • Never sacrifice your liberty to A that he may secure you from the oppression of B.
  • The snake creeps out of his skin, and changes his coat every year, but continues the same serpent.
  • I HAVE noticed that many great men in the prime of life, seeing the errors of old men, have laid down rules to steer by when they should be old; but as fast as old age creeps on, their circumstances, feelings, views, and long experience cause them to vary from their rules, and they act like other old men.  The laws of nature are stubborn things, and will not yield to accommodate any.

In regard to the pervasiveness of sin in this world . . .

  • The state of a sinner is like a beautiful mill-seat without water, or like Jericho, pleasantly situated, but intersected with poisonous streams.
  • In the whole vocabulary, there is not a word without a vowel; so in this world, there is not one free from taint.  As consonants have no sound without vowels, so religious exercises are nothing without faith.
  • It is easy and common for men to condemn those views in others, which they indulge in themselves.

Advice for preachers . . . 

  • Believe and speak, when you preach, as you do when you pray.  Keep your own conversion in view, when you preach it to others.  Never seek to make others believe what you do not believe yourself.  What you doubt about, never meddle with, till you get resolved.  When you call others to return and confess, set the example.  State the facts, like Paul; general confessions are hypocritical coverts.  Be bold in preaching what is certain, but modest in that which is contingent.  Never fatigue yourself and your hearers with a long sermon, when your spirit is not in the work.  Preach the word, and take heed to seducing spirits.
  • It is of primary importance, that the preacher should be clothed with the garment of salvation; that he should be filled with a sense of the immense worth of the truth, the guilt, depravity and danger man is in the unsearchable love of Christ in the bloody purchase, and his ability and willingness to save redeemed penitents.  Without this robe, he will preach a distant Jesus, by an unfelt gospel, and with an unhallowed tongue.  And all the self-made zeal, pretended piety, loud voice, hypocritical tears, and agonizing gesticulations that he may assume, will not supply the lack.
  • The doctrine that all have sinned, fallen into guilt, pollution, and weakness; are children of wrath and dead in trespasses and sins; is abundantly confirmed by the scriptures, by the conduct of sinners, and by the experience of the saints.  By these three witnesses the doctrine is supported, and it should be boldly preached.
  • The doctrine of redemption from the curse of the law by the blood of Christ; of repentance towards God, and faith in the Lord Jesus; of the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Ghost, of self-denial and good works; of the resurrection from the dead and eternal judgement; these doctrines, with their convictions and ramifications, may all be summed up in two words, ruin and recovery; or in other two, duty and grace:  and if preaching them is not calculated to make the ministry useful, I am at a loss to know what kind of preaching would.

Advice for those in government . . .

  • Why should great men, in high office, when guilty of fraud and robbery, be only degraded as defaulters, when little men, for crimes a thousand times less, are doomed to the prison?
  • Does not a lust for office, an excessive love of money, a desire to be thought the wisest, with the heedless zeal of those who wish to carry their favorite candidate, threaten a dissolution of our Union ?

Interesting words about the future of The United States of America . . .

  • Is it probable that the United States will continue a representative democracy sixty-four years longer, or will the love of power and wealth, the rivalship of the states, and the dissentions of parties, sink the country in anarchy, and thereby open the way for some ambitious aspirant to rise and curb the people with an iron yoke?  Who is not willing to sacrifice much of his feeling, and many of his wishes, to avert a catastrophe so gloomy ?