Time or Eternity? ™

The Sin of Unbelief

In Sin, Unbelief on April 14, 2012 at 8:00 am

Unbelief hath more phases than the moon, and more colours than the chameleon.  Common people say of the devil, that he is seen sometimes in one shape, and sometimes in another.  I am sure this is true of Satan’ first-born child—unbelief, for its forms are legion.  At one time I see unbelief dressed out as an angel of light.  It calls itself humility, and it saith, “I would not be presumptuous; I dare not think that God would pardon me; I am too great a sinner.”  We call that humility, and thank God that our friend is in so good a condition.  I do not thank God for any such delusion.  It is the devil dressed as an angel of light; it is unbelief after all.  At other times we detect unbelief in the shape of a doubt of God’s immutability: “The Lord has loved me, but perhaps he will cast me off tomorrow.  He helped me yesterday, and under the shadows of his wings I trust; but perhaps I shall receive no help in the next affliction.  He may have cast me off; he may be unmindful of his covenant, and forget to be gracious.”  Sometimes this infidelity is embodied in a doubt of God’s power.  We see every day new straits, we are involved in a net of difficulties, and we think “surely the Lord cannot deliver us.”  We strive to get rid of our burden, and finding that we cannot do it, we think God’s arm is as short as ours, and his power as little as human might.  A fearful form of unbelief is that doubt which keeps men from coming to Christ; which leads the sinner to distrust the ability of Christ to save him, to doubt the willingness of Jesus to accept so great a transgressor.  But the most hideous of all is the traitor, in its true colors, blaspheming God, and madly denying his existence.  Infidelity, deism, and atheism, are the ripe fruits of this pernicious tree; they are the most terrific eruptions of the volcano of unbelief.  Unbelief stalks the earth, uttering the rebellious cry, “No God” all the while reveling in sins.  I affirm, and the Word declares it, unbelief is a sin. 

“This is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men love darkness rather than light,”

“He that believeth not is condemned already, because he believeth not on the Son of God,”

  The sin of unbelief  is the parent of every other iniquity.There is no crime which unbelief will not beget.I think that the fall of man is very much owing to it.  It was in this point that the devil tempted Eve.  He said to her, “Yea, hath God said, ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?”  He whispered and insinuated a doubt, “Yea, hath God said so?” as much as to say, “Are you quite sure he said so?”  It was by means of unbelief—that thin part of the wedge—that the other sin entered; curiosity and the rest followed; she touched the fruit, and destruction came into this world.  Since that time, unbelief has been the prolific parent of all guilt.  It may be said of unbelief that it not only sins itself, but makes others sin; it is the egg of all crime, the seed of every offense; in fact everything that is evil and vile lies couched in that one word—unbelief.   In fact, if there can be one sin more heinous than the unbelief of a sinner, it is the unbelief of a saint.  For a saint to doubt God’s word—for a saint to distrust God after innumerable instances of his love, after ten thousand proofs of his mercy, exceeds everything.  In a saint, moreover, unbelief is the root of other sins.  When I am perfect in faith, I shall be perfect in everything else; I should always fulfill the precept if I always believed the promise.  But it is because my faith is weak, that I sin.  Once take away faith, the reins are broken; and who can ride an unbroken steed without rein or bridle?   Unbelief is the mother of vice; it is the parent of sin; and, therefore, I say it is a pestilent evil—a master sin.

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