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by Thomas Scott  


Thomas Scott (1747-1821) was a Gospel preacher well equipped to demonstrate powerfully what is the difference between true Christianity and its false counterparts within the Church. The son of a Lincolnshire grazier, and the tenth of thirteen children, he was himself bound for the cattle farming business when he decided to opt for the ordained ministry, considering that occupation to be less arduous. At length his careless, liberal views and unsanctified life were brought to bear upon him largely through the efforts of John Newton and by the grace of God he repented at the feet of the Saviour. As an evangelical pastor he soon became a great force for good in the land, and he has ever since been remembered for his tireless work, the results of which include a Commentary on the Whole Bible.





Promises are made and privileges belong to characters, not persons. Seldom or never, in the word of God, is any consolation proposed to God's people or children, otherwise than by some distinguishing mark of their character, by which they differ from all hypocrites.—All things work together for good—to whom? to God's people? yes: but they are such as love God.There is no condemnation—to whom? to believers? yes: but they are such as walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit.—Like as a father pitieth his own children, even so the Lord pitieth—whom? his children? yes: but this is their character, those that fear him. Are they who walk in darkness, and have no light, encouraged to trust in the name of the Lord, and to stay upon their God? yes: but they must be such as fear the Lord, and obey the voice of his servant. This is universally the method of scripture: and well had it been for the souls of men, if it had been always imitated, and consolation never proposed in general terms to the children of God, simply as such, and without any further description; but to persons who are of such a character; have such inward experiences, longing desires, breathings after God and holiness; and from this inward source produce habitually the fruits of edifying conversation and holy conduct. The contrary course has an evident tendency to bolster up the confidence of the presumptuous hypocrite, who, like a greedy dog, devours the children's food, without fear or shame, and, when rebuked for it, is ready to turn again and rend the faithful servant of God; while the humble, fearful believer, not daring to think himself a child, for want of having the evidences of it pointed out to him, stands trembling at a distance, and dares not venture to taste a morsel of what all belongs exclusively to him.—Most assuredly this undistinguishing way of preaching is casting that which is holy unto the dogs; and, I am deeply convinced, is one of the worst mistakes a preacher can fall into; tending most directly to stupify the consciences and harden the hearts of the ungodly, and to strengthen their hands that they should not return from their evil way; and, in proportion, discouraging the heart of the humble, broken, contrite believer. Would we be as God's mouth, let us learn to distinguish between the precious and the vile (Jer. xv, 19).




Letters and Papers of Thomas Scott