Sunday, February 25, 2024

Beecher: piety first

Sunday, February 25, 2024
    In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.
    —Hebrews 5:12-14 (NIV)
    The way to begin a Christian life is not to study theology. Piety before theology. Right living will produce right thinking. Yet many men, when their consciences are aroused, run for catechisms, and commentaries, and systems. They do not mean to be shallow Christians. They intend to be thorough, if they enter upon the Christian life at all. Now, theologies are well in their place; but repentance and love must come before all other experiences. First a cure for your sin-sick soul, and then theologies.
    ... Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887), Life Thoughts: gathered from the extemporaneous discourses of Henry Ward Beecher, Edna Dean Proctor, ed., Sheldon, 1860, p. 2 (see the book)
    See also Heb. 5:12-14; Pr. 9:10; Matt. 4:17; 11:29-30; Mark 1:15; 10:15; John 5:39-40; 13:15; Acts 3:19-20; 20:21; 1 Cor. 3:1-3; Phil. 2:5; 1 Pet. 2:1-3; 1 John 2:6
Quiet time reflection:
    Am I mature enough in love and purity to seek the deeper things of God?
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