Jeremiah 40
Biblical Illustrator
Being bound in chains.
Christian Commonwealth.
There is sadness In a shackle and bitterness In bonds. Many men part with life rather than liberty. Speaking humanly, Paul's lot In chains would have been intolerably irksome; but his soul was free! They could not chain his spirit. It is melancholy to watch the attitude of a caged eagle; its eye is dull, its plumage droops. The chain is round the spirit of the creature of the skies. Not so with the Christian soul. "It is not the shackle on the wrist that constitutes the slave," said Robertson of Brighton, "but the loss of self-respect." In Christian service we learn to reverence self. Our only bonds are the bonds of love. Our manhood is exalted, our service is liberty.

(Christian Commonwealth.)

And have not obeyed His voice.
If I were in a boat on the river in the rapids, it would not be necessary to insure my destruction that I should enter into violent controversy with those who would urge me from the shore to take heed and come to land. All I should have to do would be to shut my ears to their entreaty, and leave myself alone; the current would do the rest. Neglect of the Gospel is thus just as perilous as the open rejection of it. Indeed half the evils of our daily life in temporal things are caused by neglect, and countless are the souls who put off the seeking of the kingdom of God, and the righteousness thereof.

(W. Bates.)

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