Covetousness versus contentment

by Charles Spurgeon

I believe that it is an advantage to have wealth when wealth is kept in its right place; but the difficulty is that the horse often runs away with the rider, and he who has wealth too often loses his liberty, and falls into sore bondage, by becoming the slave of his own possessions.

Covetousness breeds an insensibility in the heart, a mortification in the conscience, a blindness in the mind. It is as hard to convict a man of it as to make a deaf ear hear of its own deficiencies.

I observe, growing up everywhere, a trifling with the Word of God, a questioning of this, and a questioning of that. I am not half so much concerned about the false doctrine that is being taught, when the teacher of it thinks he gets it from the Bible, as I am when I find men treating the Bible as though it were just nothing at all, or, at least, an exceedingly small matter. If the Scripture stands in their way, our modern divines drive a tunnel through it, as readily as men make a railroad through a hill. They toss the sacred Book on one side, as if it were quite a common document which might be treated with indifference, since the age has out grown its Bible. Now, mark this: by this shall you know whether you are a child of God, or not; by the respect that you have to your Father’s Word. If you have small respect for that Word, the evidences of a bastard are upon you. If you tremble at God’s Word, if you stand in awe of it, if you can read the one hundred and nineteenth Psalm through, and can join with David in intense delight in the Law of God, you have the traits of a true-born child of God, and the Book is yours, with all that it contains; but if not, you are one of the children of that evil one who questioned the Word of the Lord in the beginning, and continues to deny it to this day. If you pick and choose in the teachings of inspiration; if you believe this, and slight that, you make yourself a judge of that which is your Judge, and you have not the tokens of a child of God.

I cannot under the influence of this grand text find room for doubt or fear. I cannot stand here and be miserable to-night. I am not going to attempt such a thing; but I cannot be despondent with such a text as this, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” I defy the devil himself to mention circumstances under which I ought to be miserable if this text is true. Child of God, nothing ought to make you unhappy when you can realize this precious text.

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