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Holiness; 5. The Cost, JC Ryle

Saturday, September 29, 2007

“Which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first and counteth the cost?” – Luke 14:28

Few ask the question, “What does it cost?”

I. What it costs to be a true Christian
II. Why it is of such great importance to count the cost
III. Some hints which may help men to count the cost rightly

Nothing is more common than to see people receiving the Word with joy, and then after two or three years falling away, and going back to their sins. They had not considered “what it costs” to be a really consistent believer and holy Christian.

I. What it costs to be a true Christian
– There are enemies to be overcome, battles to be fought, sacrifices to be made, an Egypt to be forsaken, a wilderness to be passed through, a cross to be carried, a race to be run.

The Bishop will show us 4 Things His Religion Will Cost Him:
(1) his self-righteousness
– he must cast away all pride and high thoughts, and conceit of his own goodness
– he must be willing to give up all trust in his own morality, respectability, praying, Bible-reading, Church-going, and sacrament-receiving, and to trust in nothing but Jesus Christ

(2) hi sins
– he must be willing to give up every habit and practice which is wrong in God’s sight
– all sins must be thoroughly renounced
– our sins are often as dear to us as our children: we love them, hug them, cleave to them, and delight in them
– he and sin must quarrel, if he and God are to be friends
(3) his love of ease
– he must take heed to his behaviour every hour of the day, in every company, and in every place, in public as well as in private, among strangers as well as at home.
– he must be careful over his time, his tongue, his temper, his thoughts, his imaginations, his motives, his conduct in every relation of life
– he must be diligent about his prayers, his Bible-reading, and his use of Sundays, with all their means of grace
(4) the favour of the world
– he must be content to be thought ill of by man if he pleases God
– the cup which our Master drank must be drunk by His disciples

Surely a Christian should be willing to give up anything which stands between him and heaven.

A religion that costs nothing is worth nothing!

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