(Thomas Brooks, "The Crown and Glory of Christianity,
or, HOLINESS, the Only Way to Happiness", 1662)
"Woe unto you, Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for
you devour widows' houses, and for a pretense make
long prayers; therefore you shall receive the greater
damnation." Matthew 23:14
Who had a greater name for holiness, and who made a
greater show of holiness, and who did more despise and
insult other men for the lack of holiness--than the Scribes
and Pharisees? And who so miserable now--as they?
Pretended holiness will double-damn souls at last!
None have so large a portion in hell as hypocrites have.
No man at last will be found so miserable, as he who has
the name of a saint upon him--but not the divine nature
in him; who has a profession of holiness upon him--but no
principles of holiness in him; who has a form of godliness
--but not the power; who can cry up godliness--but in
practice denies it; who is a professor outwardly--but
an atheist, a pagan, a devil inwardly.
Artificial sanctity is double iniquity. He who professes
piety without being pious, and godliness without being
godly; he who makes counterfeit holiness a cloak to
impiety, and a midwife to iniquity; he who is . . .
a Jacob without--and an Esau within,
a David without--and a Saul within,
a John without--and a Judas within,
a saint without--and a Satan within,
an angel without--and a devil within,
is ripened for the worst of torments!
Sirs, do not deceive your own souls!
A painted sword shall as soon defend a man, and
a painted mint shall as soon enrich a man, and
a painted fire shall as soon warm a man, and
a painted friend shall as soon counsel a man, and
a painted horse shall as soon carry a man, and
a painted feast shall as soon nourish a man, and
a painted house shall as soon shelter a man--as
a painted holiness shall save a man! He who
now thinks to put off God with a painted holiness,
shall not fare so well at last--as to be put off with
a painted happiness. The lowest, the hottest, and
the darkest habitation in hell will be his portion,
whose religion lies all in shows and shadows.
Well, spiritual counterfeits, remember this--it will
not be long before Christ will unmask you; before
He will uncloak you; before He will disrobe you;
before He will take off your masks, your cloaks,
and turn your rotten insides outward--to your
eternal shame and reproach before all the world!
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon