Daily Devotion: Thursday
Psalm of the Day: Psalm 25
Proverb of the Day: Proverbs 16:18-33
Scripture Reading: Luke 3:7-14
We should mark how plainly John speaks to his hearers about Hell and danger. He tells them that there is a "coming wrath!" He speaks of "the ax" of God's judgment and of unfruitful trees being "thrown into the fire!" The subject of HELL is always offensive to human nature. The minister who dwells much upon it must expect to find himself regarded as barbaric, violent, unfeeling and narrow-minded! Men love to hear "smooth things," and to be told of peace, and not of danger (Isaiah 30:10). But the subject of Hell is one that ought not to be kept back, if we desire to do good to souls. It is one that our Lord Jesus Christ brought forward frequently in His public teachings. That loving Savior, who spoke so graciously of the way to Heaven has also used the plainest language about the way to Hell. Let us beware of being wise above that which is written, and more charitable than Scripture itself. Let the language of John the Baptist be deeply engraved on our hearts. Let us never be ashamed to avow our firm belief, that there is a "coming wrath" for the impenitent; and that it is possible for a man to be lost, as well as to be saved. To be silent on the subject is dreadful treachery to men's souls. It only encourages them to persevere in wickedness, and fosters the devil's old delusion in their minds, "You shall not surely die!" Genesis 3:4 That minister is surely our best friend who tells us honestly of danger, and warns us, like John the Baptist, to "flee from the wrath to come!" Never will a man flee until he sees that there is real cause to be afraid. Never will he seek Heaven until he is convinced that he is on his way to Hell. The religion in which there is no mention of Hell is not the religion of John the Baptist, or of our Lord Jesus and His apostles!
Prayer for the Day: Dear Lord, help me to speak the truth in love and not water down Scripture to make others feel comfortable.
Action Plan: Who along my path today needs to hear God's truth spoken in love?
This devotional was taken from The Gospel of Luke by J.C. Ryle published in 1858
and adapted by Pastor Tim Lewis of New England Shores Baptist Church.