365 days with Newton


God’s commands are perfect

‘And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.’ Genesis 3:2–3

Observe Satan will not be afraid of those who have much light in their heads, if their hearts are insincere before God. It is not talking about Christ and grace and holiness that will preserve you from the power of temptation, if your hearts desire the forbidden thing. But it is a high aggravation to sin against such light. It is the case of many amongst us. You do it not ignorant—you know the judgements of God. Satan can hardly be said to cheat you, for you obey him with your eyes open. Eve seems to add to God’s word. He said not eat—she puts in not touch. Perhaps Satan used this to advantage against her, and when she found she did not die for touching it, she might venture more boldly to eat it. However, men are very prone to add their own inventions to the Word of God, which in many ways becomes a snare to them. The commands of God are perfect and cannot be amended. And they are so broad as to call for all our strength and time to observe them. If we do more than we are commanded we shall infallibly leave something unattended to that he has made our duty.
When the cross I view by faith,
What before excited fears,
Sin is madness, poison, death;
Rather pleasing now appears;
Tempt me not, ’tis all in vain,
If a sin, it seems so small,
Sure I ne’er can yield again.
Or, perhaps, no sin at all.

Satan, for a while debarred,
Often thus, through sin’s deceit,
When he finds me off my guard,
Grief and shame, and loss I meet;
Puts his glass before my eyes,
Like a fish, my soul mistook,
Quickly other thoughts arise.
Saw the bait, but not the hook.

Made, by past experience, wise, Let me learn thy word to prize;
Taught by what I’ve felt before, Let me Satan’s glass abhor.


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