Let your light shine!

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Blueridge Believer

Puritan Board Professor
(John MacDuff, "The Christian's Pathway" 1858)

"Let your light shine before men, so that they may
see your good works and give glory to your Father
in heaven." Matthew 5:16

There are many things connected with the Christian's
pathway—which worldlings cannot comprehend. They
know nothing of the high and hidden walks of spiritual
experience. What is said of the workings of the divine
life in the soul—is regarded by them as foolishness
and fanaticism.
Its internal principles,
its constraining motives and impulses,
its heavenly aspirations,
its rapturous bliss, and
its agonizing struggles—are things which
these strangers cannot comprehend!

But still, there is much which they are able to
understand—such as . . .
whatever is consistent in character;
whatever is honest and straightforward between men;
whatever is kind and compassionate in behavior;
whatever is forbearing and forgiving under insults
and injuries.
Such features, when unostentatiously exhibited—excite
their attention, and, generally, call forth their praise. The
manner in which the ordinary duties of life are discharged,
is something so tangible—that it lies within the province of
their own observation. These things they can understand;
and it is of the highest importance that all who profess to
be Christians, should be distinguished by an exhibition of
these practical fruits of righteousness.

What if a small band of Christians were placed in some
locality, by whom the principles of the gospel were fully
lived out. What a powerful effect, we may suppose, would
their simple presence produce! Let them be connected with
those around them—by the ordinary engagements of life;
but without employing any direct means to promulgate
their Christian views. There they are—"blameless and pure,
children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved
generation." Their hearts are filled, not merely with love
to God—but with sincere and ardent affection for all by
whom they are surrounded. Selfishness, pride, resentment,
censoriousness—have no place among them. Their entire
spirit and deportment are influenced and controlled by
those noble, and generous, and god-like sentiments and
feelings, which Christianity inculcates and inspires. The holy
religion they profess, would appear in its true character and
beneficent tendency; and men would be constrained by the
good works which they beheld—to glorify God.

May the Lord strengthen you with all might, according to
His glorious power—"that you may live a life worthy of the
Lord and may please Him in every way—bearing fruit in
every good work, growing in the knowledge of God!"
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