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according to a celebrated critic, it is from the word hasidim, the pious, that the word Essenes is derived, a name given to the whole sect among the Jews, because they professed a more eminent piety than others. A "goodness like the morning dew" is a seeming piety, "which goeth away," that is of a short duration, and all these words, "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? For your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away," are a reproof from God to his people for the unsteadiness of their devotions. In this light we will consider the text, and show you first the nature and secondly the unprofitableness of transient devotions.
I. Let us first inquire the nature of the piety in question. What is this goodness or piety, that "is as a morning cloud, and goeth away as the early dew?" We do not understand by this piety either those deceitful appearances of hypocrites, who conceal their profane and irreligious hearts under the cover of ardour and religion, or the disposition of those Christians, who fall through their own frailty from high degrees of pious zeal, and experience emotions of sin after they have felt exercises of grace. The devotion we mean to describe goes farther than the first: but it does not go so far as the last.
The transient devotion, of which we speak, is not hypocrisy. Hypocrisy cannot suspend the strokes of divine justice one single moment, and it is more likely to inflame than to extinguish the righteous indignation of God. It is not to hypocrites that God addresses this tender language, "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee?" Their sentence is declared, their punishment is ready. "Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophecy of you, saying, this people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Wo unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites. The portion of hypocrites shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth," Matt. xv. 7; xxiii. 31, and xxiv. 51.
the frailty of his nature to go down again into the world, and to employ himself about what? A suit of clothes, a menial servant, a nothing! Above all, it is very mortifying to him, after he has tasted pleasure so pure, to feel himself disposed to sin! But after all, this piety, though very imperfect, is genuine and true. It should humble us, but it should not destroy us, and we should be animated with a spirit too rigid, were we to confound this piety with that, which "is as the morning cloud, and as the early dew that goeth away."
The piety we speak of lies between these two dispositions. As I said before, it does not go so far in religion as the second, but it does go beyond the first. It is sincere, in that it is superior to hypocrisy; but it is unfruitful, and in that respect it is inferior to the piety of the weak and revolting Christian. It is sufficient to discover sin, but not to correct it; sufficient to produce sincere resolutions, but not to keep them: it softens the heart, but it does not renew it; it excites grief, but it does not eradicate evil dispositions. It is a piety of times, opportunities, and circumstances, diversified a thousand ways, the effect of innumerable causes, and, to be more particular, it usually ows its origin to public calamities, or to solemn festivals, or to the approach of death: but it expires as soon as the causes are removed.
Nor is the piety we mean to describe that of the weak and revolting believer. How imperfect soever this piety may be, yet it is real. It is certainly a very mortifying consideration to a believer that he should be at any time hemmed in, confined, and clogged, in his devotional exercises. In some golden days of his life, forgetting the world, and wholly employed about heavenly things, how happy was he, how delicious his enjoyments, when he surmounted sense and sin, ascended to God like Moses formerly on the holy mount, and there conversed with his heavenly Father concerning religion, salvation, and eternity! O how richly did he then think himself indemnified for the loss of time in worldly pursuits by pouring his complaints into the bosom of God, by opening all his heart, by saying to him with inspired men, "Lord, thou knowest that I love thee! it is good for me to draw near to God! My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips!" I say, it is a very mortifying thing to him, after such elevations in the enjoyment of such magnificent objects, to be obliged through
1. By piety, "like the early dew that goeth away," we mean that which is usually excited by public calamities. When a state prospers, when its commerce flourishes, when its armies are victorious, it acquires weight and consequence in the world. Prosperity is usually productive of crimes. Conscience falls asleep during a tumult of passions, as depravity continues security increases, the patience of God becomes weary, and he punishes either by taking away prosperity, or by threatening to take it away. The terrible messengers of divine justice open their commission. The winds which he makes his angels, begin to utter their voices: flames of fire, constituted his ministers, display their frightful light. Pestilence, war, famine, executioners of the decrees of heaven, prepare to discharge their dreadful office. One messenger called death, and another called hell, receive their bloody commission, “to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, the fourth part of the earth," Rev. vi. 8. Each individual sees his own doom in the public decree. "Capernaum exalted to heaven is going to be thrust down to hell," Luke x. 15. Jonah walks about Nineveh, and makes the walks echo with this alarming proclamation, "Yet forty days and Nineveh shall be overthrown. Yet forty days and Nineveh shall be overthrown," chap. iii. 4. Or, to lay aside borrowed names, and to make our portrait like the original, your ministers free from their natural timidity or indolence, despising those petty tyrants, or shall I rather say those diminutive insects, who amidst a free people would have us the only slaves; who while all kinds of vices have free course would have the word of God bound, and would reduce the exercise of the reform ministry to a state more mean and pusillanimous than that of court bishops, or the chaplains of kings; I say, your ministers have made you hear their voice, they have
gone back to your origin, and laid before you | vigorate and bring it to maturity, thus proporthe cruel edicts, the sanguinary proscriptions, tioning itself to our frailty. How considerable the barbarous executions, the heaps of mangled soever the truths of religion are, it is certain carcasses, which were, if I may so speak, the they lose their importance by our hearing first foundations of this republic. From what them always proposed in the same circumyou were then they have proceeded to what stances, and the same points of light. There you are now; they have represented to you the are some days which put on I know not what end proposed by the Supreme Being in distin- of the extraordinary, and put in motion, so to guishing you by so many merciful advantages; speak, the first great powers of religion. To they have told you it was to engage you to in- this our festivals are directed, and this is one form idolatrous nations of the truth, to nourish of the principal uses of the Lord's Supper. and favour it in cruel and persecuting countries, Were this ordinance not appointed with this to support it at home, and so to cast out pro- view as some affirm, had not God annexed faneness, infidelity, and atheism. They have some peculiar benediction to it, yet it would repeatedly urged you to come to a settlement be a weak pretence to keep from the Lord's of accounts on these subjects, and they have table, and the use generally granted would delivered in against you such an interrogatory always be a sufficient reason to induce those to as this; are the "hands which hang down, and frequent it who have their salvation at heart. the feeble knees lifted up?" Does superstition But however this may be, it is certain that such cover the truth in any places of your govern- days occasion the sort of devotion we are dement? Is the affliction of Joseph neglected? scribing, and usually produce a piety" like the Does irreligion insolently lift its head among morning cloud, and the early dew that goeth you, and is it protected by such as are bound away." to suppress it? They have shown you the Deity ready to punish an obstinate perseverance in sin, and, if you will forgive the expression, they have preached, illuminated by lightning, and their exhortations have been enforced by thunder. Then every one was struck, all hearts were united, every one ran to the "breach, to turn away the wrath of God, lest he should destroy us all," Ps. cvi. 23. The magistrate came down from his tribunal, the merchant quitted his commerce, the mechanic laid aside his work, yea the very libertine suspended his pleasures; vows, prayers, solemn protestations, tears, relentings, promises, sincere promises, nothing was wanting to your devotions. Then the angels rejoiced, a compassionate God smiled, the corn revived, war was hushed, and was dying away; but along with the first tide of prosperity came rolling back the former depravity, the same indifference to truth, the same negligence of religion, the same infidelity, the same profanity. This is the first kind of that piety, which is "as the early dew that goeth away." Let us study ourselves in the image of the Jews described in the context. "Come," say they, when the prophet had predicted the Babylonish captivity to Judah, and the carrying away into Assyria to the ten tribes, "come, and let us return unto the Lord, for he hath torn, and he will heal us, he hath smitten, and he will bind us up. After two or three days he will revive us, and we shall live in his sight," ver. 12. "After they had rest, they did evil again before thee" (these are the words of Nehemiah,) "therefore thou didst leave them in the hand of their enemies. When they returned, and cried unto thee, thou heardest them from heaven, and many times didst thou deliver them, according to thy mercies. O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as the morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away," chap. ix. 28.
We do not intend here to describe a kind of Christians too odious to be put even into this vicious class. For, my brethren, we have a very singular sort of people among us, who, though they live in the practice of all worldly licentiousness, will frequent the Lord's table, in spite of all the pains we take to show their unworthiness, and to keep them away. They will pass through a kind of preparation, and for this purpose they retrench a little portion of time from their course of licentiousness, set out, however, with so much accurate calculation that it is easy to see they consider devotion more in the light of a disagreeable task than in that of a holy enjoyment. They suspend their habits of sin the whole day before, and all the live long day after the communion. In this interval they receive the Lord's Supper, all the while determining to return to their old course of life. What devotion! in which the soul burns with love to worldly pleasure, while it affects to play off the treacherous part of love to religion and God! A devotion that disputes with Jesus Christ a right to three days, gives them up with egret and constraint, and keeps all along murmuring at the genius of a religion, which puts the poor insulted soul on the rack, and forces it to live three whole days without gaming and debauchery! A devotion deep in the plot of Judas to betray the Saviour at his own table! These people need not be characterized. We never administer the Lord's Supper without protesting against them; we never say any thing to them but "Wo, wo be to you;" and though, through a discipline of too much lenity, they escape excommunication, yet never can they escape the anathemas, which God in his word denounces against unworthy communicants.
2. In a second class of transient devotions we place that which religious solemnities produce. Providence always watching for our salvation, has established in the church not only an ordinary ministry to cultivate our piety, but some extraordinary periods proper to in
We mean here people of another character. It is he among Christians who does not live in the practice of all sins, but who does reserve some, and some of those which, says the gospel, they who commit "shall not inherit the kingdom of God," 1 Cor. vi. 10. This man does not with a brutal madness commit such crimes as harden him beyond reflection and remorse, but he has a sincere desire to a certain degree to correct himself. He takes time enough to
prepare himself for the Lord's Supper, and then he examines his conscience, meditates on the great truths of religion, the justice of its laws, the holiness of every part, and the rich present which God bestowed on the church in the person of his own Son. He is affected with these objects, he applies these truths to himself, he promises God to reform: but, in a few days after the communion, he not only falls into one or two vicious actions, but he gives himself up to a vicious habit, and persists in it till the next communion, when he goes over again the same excesses of devotion, which end again in the same vices, and so his whole life is a continual round of sin and repentance, repentance and sin. This is a second sort of people whose devotions are transient.
spectfully attended to every thing we took the liberty to say, we entered on the mortifying subject, you submitted to the most humbling and circumstantial detail, you yourself filled up the list with articles unknown to us. Recollect the sighs you uttered, the tears you shed, the reproofs you gave yourself, yea, the odious names by which you described yourself. Remember the vows, the resolutions, the promises you made. What are become of all these fine projects of conversion and repentance, which should have had an influence over all your life? The degree of your piety was regulated by the degree of your malady. Devotion rose and fell with your pulse. Your zeal kept time with your fever, and as the one decreased the other died away, and the recovery of your health was the resurrection of sin. This man, this praying man, this holy soul, then full of pious ejaculations and meditations, is now brim
3. But, of all devotions of this kind, that which needs describing the most, because it comes nearest to true piety, and is most likely to be confounded with it, is that which is ex-ful of the world. You are the original of the cited by the "fear of death," and which van- portrait in the text, and your piety is "as the ishes as soon as the fear subsides. morning cloud, and as the early dew that goeth away."
II. We have seen the nature, now let us attend to the insufficiency of this kind of devotion. Let us endeavour in this second part of our discourse to feel the energy of this reproof, "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away."
1. On a day like this, in which we have partaken of what is most tender in religion. and in which we ought to yield to the soft feelings which religion is so fit to excite, let us advert to a singular kind of argument proposed in the text against transient devotions, that is, an argument of sentiment and love.
Certainly all the images which it pleases God to use in Scripture to make himself known to us, those taken from our infirmities, our passions, our hatred, or our love, all are too imperfect to represent a God, whose elevation above man renders it impossible to describe him by any thing human. However, all these images have a bottom of truth, a real meaning agreeable to the nature of God, and proportioned to his eminent and infinite excellence.
God represents himself here under the image of a prince who had formed an intimate connexion with one of his subjects. The subject seems deeply sensible of the honour done him. The prince signifies his esteem by a profusion of favours. The subject abuses them. The prince reprehends him. The subject is insensible and hard. To reproofs threatenings are added, and threatenings are succeeded by a suspension of favours. The subject seems moved, affected, changed. The prince receives the penitent with open arms, and crowns his reformation with a double effusion of bountiful donations. The ungrateful subject abuses them again. The prince reproves him again, threatens him again, and again suspends his liberality. To avert the same evil the selfish ingrate makes use of the former method, avails himself of the influence which the esteem of the prince gives him, and again he obtains forgiveness. The prince loves this violence: but the perfidious subject knowing his goodness returns to his ungrateful behaviour as often as his bountiful lord
The most emphatical, the most urgent, and the most pathetical of all preachers is death. What can be said in this pulpit which death does not say with tenfold force? What truth can we explain, which death does not explain with more evidence? Do we treat of the vanity of the world? So does death; but with much more power. The impenetrable veils which it throws over all terrestrial objects, the midnight darkness in which it involves them, the irrevocable orders it gives us to depart, the insurmountable power it employs to tear us away, represent the vanity of the world better than the most pathetical sermons. Do we speak of the horrors of sin? Death treats of this subject more fully and forcibly than we; the pains it brings, the marks it makes upon us while we are dying, the grave, to which it turns our eyes as our habitation after death, represent the horror of sin more than the most affecting discourses. Do we speak of the value of divine mercy? Death excels in setting this forth too; hell opening under us, executioners of divine vengeance ranging themselves round our bed, the sharp instruments held over us, represent the mercy of God more fully than the most touching discourses. No sermons like these! When then a sickness supposed to be mortal attacks a man, who has knowledge and sentiment enough to render him accessible to motives and reflections, but who has not either respect enough for holiness, or love enough for God thoroughly to attach himself to virtue, then rises this "morning cloud, this early dew that goeth away."
I appeal to many of you. Recall, each of you, that memorable day of your life, in which sudden fear, dangerous symptoms, exquisite pain, a pale physician, and, more than all that, a universal faintness and imbecility of your faculties seemed to condemn you to a hasty death. Remember the prudence you have had, at least appeared to have, to make salvation your only care, banishing all company, forbidding your own children to approach, and conversing with your pastor alone. Remember the docility with which, renouncing all reluctance to speak of your own faults, and all desire to hear of those of other people, you re
yields to his own inclination to mercy and es- | he will bind us up. After two days will he teem, and thus becomes equally barbarous, whe- revive us, in the third day he will raise us up;" ther he seems affected with the benevolence of and when he has "raised us up," and re-estahis prince, or whether he seems to despise it. blished us, we will follow our former course of For, my brethren, it is much less difficult to life. When the tempest is over, we will again separate one's self wholly from a faithless blaspheme the Creator of storms. Is not this friend, than to conduct one's self properly to the very summit of injustice! one who is faithless only by fits. These equivocal reformations, these appearances of esteem, are much more cruel than total ingratitude, and open avowed hatred. In an entire rupture the mind is presently at a point: but in such imperfect connexions as these a thousand opposite thoughts produce a violent conflict in the mind. Shall I countenance ingratitude, shall I discourage repentance? I repeat it again, though this image is infinitely beneath the majesty of God, yet it is that which he has thought proper to employ. "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away." Ephraim, O Judah, why do you rend my heart asunder by turns with your virtue and your vice? Why not allow me either to give myself entirely to you, or to detach myself entirely from you? Why do you not suffer me to give a free course either to my esteem or to my displeasure? Why do you not allow me to glorify myself by your repentance, or by your ruin? Your devotions hold my hand: your crimes inflame my anger. Shall I destroy a people appealing to my clemency? Shall I protect a people trampling upon my laws? "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, wha shall I do unto thee for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away." 2. Consider secondly, the injustice of these devotions. Though they are vain, yet people expect God to reward them. Hear these words, they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness:" but, say they, wherefore have we fasted, and thou seest not? Wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge," Isa. Iviii. 2, 3. Though these complaints were unjust, yet, what is very remarkable, God sometimes paid attention to them; for though he sees the bottom of men's hearts, and distinguishes real from apparent piety, yet he has so much love, for repentance, that he sometimes rewards the bare appearance of it. See how he conducts himself in regard to Ahab. Ahab was a wicked king. God denounced judgments against him, and was about to inflict them. Ahab tore his garments, covered himself with sackcloth and ashes, and lay in the dust. What said God to Elijah? "Seest thou how Ahab humbleth himself before me? Because he humbleth himself before me, I will not bring the evil," 1 Kings xxi. 29. Not bring the evil! Why, has Ahab prohibited idolatry? Has he restored Naboth's vineyard? Has he renounced his treaties with the enemies of God? No. Yet "Ahab humbleth himself, and because he humbleth himself I will not bring the evil." So true it is, that God sometimes rewards a mere shadow of repentance.
3. There is, let us observe, a manifest contradiction between these two periods of life, between that of our devotion and that of our sin. What destroys one, necessarily subverts both; and a reasonable man acting consistently ought to choose, either to have no periods of devotion, or to perpetuate them. Yes, we should choose either a real inward piety to influence our practice, or none of the superficial sentiments that produce a profession of it. We should choose either to act openly like an unmoveable philosopher, or shall I rather say a brute beast, when we seem to be upon the verge of the grave, or that the piety excited then should continue as long as we live in case of recovery. There is a palpable contradiction in having both these dispositions. When the state is in danger, and a solemn fast is kept, what is supposed? That there is a just God governing the universe, dispensing good and evil, sooner or later destroying rebellious nations, and exercising a justice more or less severe according to the duration of his patience. If we believe all this, we should endeavour to regulate the state by these principles, and if we do not believe it, we should not humble ourselves, and fast, and "bow down our heads like a bulrush." What is supposed by the prayers, and tears, and protestations we bring to the table of Jesus Christ? That God loves us, that he has so loved us as to give us his Son, that a Christian ought to return Jesus Christ love for love, and life for life. If we believe this, we ought to be always faithful to God, and if we do not believe it, we ought not to communicate, to pray, to weep, to promise. What is supposed by all the appearance of devotion we have in sickness? That the soul is immortal, that there is a future state, that an eternity of happiness or misery awaits us. If we believe this, we ought to regulate our actions by these truths, and if we do not believe it, if the soul be not immortal, if heaven and hell be phantoms, we ought not to put on an appearance of religion in prospect of death. But such is our littleness, when we lose sight of a thing, we think it ceases to be. When we find the art of forgetting truth, it should seem truth is no more. When we cease thinking of our judge, it seems to us there is no judge. We resemble children who shut their eyes to hide themselves from the sight of their nurses.
4. Every part of devotion supposes some action of life, so that if there be no such action the whole value of devotion ceases. We hear a sermon, in this sermon we are taught some truth of religion which has a close and inseparable connexion with our moral conduct. We are told that a judge must be upright, a friend disinterested, a depository faithful. We do well to be attentive to this sermon: but after we have heard it, we violate all the rules, if we be corrupt judges, ungrateful friends, faithless depositaries; and if because we have heard our duty we think ourselves discharged from the necessity of doing it, do we not pervert the
The Jews knew this condescension of God, and they insulted it in the most odious manner. Come, let us return unto the Lord, for he hath torn, and he will heal us, he hath smitten and
order and destination of this discourse? We receive the Lord's Supper, there we go to confirm our faith, to detach ourselves from the world, to prepare ourselves for a future state. We do well to receive the Lord's Supper: but if after we have received it we become lax in believing, fastened to the world, and without thought of a future state, and if we neglect these duties, under pretence that we took steps relative to these duties, do we not pervert the Lord's Supper? This reasoning is so clear, that it seems needless to pretend to elucidate it. Yet many people reason in this manner, I have been to a place of worship, I have heard a sermon, I have received the communion, and now I may give a loose to my passions: but it is because you have been to a place of worship, it is because you have heard a sermon, and received the communion, it is on account of this, that you ought wholly to employ yourself about that work, to promote which all these devotions were appointed.
5. Transient devotions are inconsistent with the general design of religion. This design is to reform man, to renew him, to transform him into the likeness of glorified saints, to render him like God. But how does a rapid torrent of devotion attended with no moral rectitude contribute to this end? If while I fast I eradicate the world from my heart, if while I acknowledge the enormity of my past life I endeavour to reform it, if while I give mortal blows to the old man I form the new man in my heart, and if I thus build the edifice of grace, where once the temple of depravity stood, then I direct a fast day towards the great end of religion. But what says God of another kind of fasting? "Is it such a fast that I have chosen, that a man should afflict his soul for a day? Is it to bow down the head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord? Isa. lviii. 5. And what says God of exterior devotions in general? "To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the Lord. I am full of burnt-offerings and incense. Your new moons I cannot away with. Who hath required this at your hand? chap. i. 11. The answer seems ready. Didst not thou, Lord, establish this worship, order an elegant temple to be built, and command the Jews to go up to Jerusalem? Sabbaths, solemn assemblies, new moons, do they not owe their origin to thee? No: when they are destitute of love and obedience, "I hate new moons and Sabbaths, and solemn assemblies I cannot away with." In like manner, of all devotions of every kind, when they are not attended with uniform moral obedience, we say, and in particular of the Lord's Supper we say, "I am weary" of your preparations, "I am full" of momentary devotions, and your pretended holy resolutions "I cannot away with." "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away."
6. Transient devotions must render promises of grace to you doubtful, even supposing you should ever, after a thousand revolutions of transient piety, be in possession of true and real religion. What think you of this question? A
man who has spent his life in sin is taken extremely ill. His illness, a review of his life, and a fear of death, rouse his conscience. He sends for a minister, he opens to him all his heart, he confesses his sins, he weeps, he groans, he protests ten thousand times that he hates his past life, and that he is determined to reform. He persuades himself, and all about him, that he is really converted. The minister promises him peace, and displays before him all the comfortable declarations, which it has pleased God to bestow in the gospel. The sick man recovers his health, returns to the world, forgets all his designs of conversion and repentance, and pursues his former course of intrigue, and passion, and arrogance. He falls sick a second time, sends a second time for his minister, and again he opens his heart, accuses himself, sheds floods of tears, and once more vows amendment and conversion. The minister on the same principle as before encourages him to hope again. He recovers again, and perjures himself again, as he did the first time. A third time his illness returns, and he takes the same steps, and would embrace the same promises, if they could be addressed to him. Now we ask, how a minister ought to conduct himself to such a man? What think you of this question? You know our commission, it is to preach peace to such as return to God with sincerity and good faith. The marks of sincerity and good faith are good works, and where circumstances render good works impossible, protestations and promises are to be admitted as evidences of sincerity and good faith. These evidences have been deceitful in the man we speak of. His transition from promising to violating was as quick as that from violating to promising. Have we any right to suppose the penitent knows his heart better this third time than he did the first and second? How should we be able to determine his state, how can we address to him any other than doubtful promises, since God, in some sort, adopts such sentiments in the text? "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud that goeth away."
7. Consider finally, the imprudence of a man who divides his life in this manner into periods of devotion and periods of sin. It seems at first to be the height of wisdom to find the unheard-of art of uniting the reward of virtue, with the pleasure of vice. On the one side, by devoting only a few moments to religion he spares himself the pains which they experience who make conscience of giving themselves entirely up to it: and by suspending only for a little while the exercise of his passions, he en joys the pleasure of hoping fully to gratify them. On the other side, he quiets the storms of divine justice that threaten his rebellion, and thus obtains by devotions of a moment a protection, which others devote a whole life to acquire Let us undeceive ourselves. A heart divided in this manner cannot be happy. The chief cause of the difficulties we meet with in the way of salvation is owing to our partial walking, and to the fluctuation of the soul between religion and the world. The world combats religion, religion combats the world. The divided heart is the field of battle where this