A new Thursday brings us to our next reading in Richard Sibbes’ classic The Bruised Reed. This week we were to read chapter 6 (“Marks of the Smoking Flax”) and chapter 7 (“Help for the Weak”).
Some weeks I like to provide a summary of the content of the chapters we’ve read. Today, though, I think I’ll simply provide a roundup of some of those most quotable quotes. As I’ve said before, Sibbes has that Puritan ability to condense massive amounts of truth into a single and highly memorable statement. He reminds me a little bit of Matthew Henry in that regard. Here are a few of the statements I just had to highlight.
“We must not judge of ourselves always according to present feeling, for in temptations we shall see nothing but smoke of distrustful thoughts.”
“We must acknowledge that in the covenant of grace God requires the truth of grace, not any certain measure; and a spark of fire is fire, as well as the whole element. Therefore we must look to grace in the sparks as well as in the flame.”
“God knows we have nothing of ourselves, therefore in the covenant of grace he requires no more than he gives, but gives what he requires, and accepts what he gives.”
“Christians than have light that is little for quantity, but heavenly for quality, persevere, when men of larger apprehensions sink.”
“There is nothing in the world more uneasy than the heart of a wicked man made to listen to spiritual instruction, until, like a thief, he puts out the candle so that he may sin with less restraint.”
“Our chief comfort is that our blessed Savior, as he bade Satan depart from him, after he had given way awhile to his insolence, so he will command him to be gone from us, when it shall be good for us.”
“The more sin is seen, the more it is hated, and therefore it is less. Dust particles are in a room before the sun shines, but they only appear then.”
“The more grace, the more spiritual life, and the more spiritual life, the more antipathy to the contrary. Therefore none are so aware of corruption as those whose souls are most alive.”
“We should not avoid good actions because of the infirmities attending them. Christ looks more at the good in them which he means to cherish than the ill in them which he means to abolish.”
“Christ loves to taste of the good fruits that come from us, even though they will always savour of our old nature.”
“By prayer we learn to pray.”
For next Thursday please read chapters 8 and 9.
The purpose of this program is to read classics together. So if there are things that stood out to you in this chapter, if there are questions you had, this is the time and place to have your say. Feel free to post a comment below or to link to your blog if you’ve chosen to write about this on your own site.