Robert Cleaver on hypocritical zeal and the Brownists

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Reformed Covenanter

Cancelled Commissioner
... We must then first of all judge our selves, and cast the first stone at our selves, that so finding how ugly and noisome a thing sin is, and that by experience in our selves, we may be at defiance with it, wheresoever we find it, and neither flatter others in their evil courses, nor yet too rigorously and unmercifully rebuke them for the same. Those that have been pinched with sickness and are recovered, can by the smart which they have felt, pity others in the like case: even so they which have been stung with sin themselves, can more easily be moved to shew compassion towards poor sinners like themselves, because by the feeling of misery, men learn the practise of mercy, in that Christ suffered and was tempted, he is able to pity and to succour those that are tempted.

Against this rule doe all hypocrites offend, who will wade very deeply into other men’s souls, and very bloodily gore other men’s consciences, who yet never once purged their own unclean sinks at home, nor drew one drop of blood out of their own corrupt hearts. Such were the Pharisees, who pleased themselves much in judging and censuring our Saviour and his Disciples; but were so far from condemning themselves as faulty in any thing, that they justified themselves before God and men. Such also are the Brownists, which are ready to burst their bowels with crying out against disorders abroad, and yet never reform their own souls at home: for if they did, they would also reform their lives and their families. ...

For more, see Robert Cleaver on hypocritical zeal and the Brownists.
 
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