The Peril of the Spiritual Guide
Psalm 103:22
Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul.

Such is the title which a great preacher has given to a sermon on this text. The subject is suggested by its closing words. The psalmist had been summoning angels and all the works of the Lord to bless the Lord, and, as if he remembered that he might be -


"Bless the Lord, O my soul!"

1. And this is a real possibility and a terrible peril. Like as a guide to the loveliest scenes of nature may lead a traveller to different points of view, which will show the glorious landscape at its best, and may expatiate on the beauties that are to be seen, yet may himself be not in the slightest degree stirred or moved by what he calls on the traveller to admire. He has come to be so familiar with it all; he has said the same thing so many times, it is part of his professional talk; he has seen all these glorious things so often, that they have lost their power to affect him. At first it was otherwise; he had become a guide to these scenes because he so delighted in them. But that was a long time ago. He had thought that he could not spend his life more happily than in conducting others to these same beautiful places, and showing them their glories. But all that enthusiasm has long passed, and he is now a mere professional guide.

2. And so, the great preacher to whom I have referred points out, it may be with the spiritual guide - the minister of Christ, the teacher of others in holy things. He may have begun with enthusiasm for the blessed truths and the bright prospects to which he was to lead others; he had such joy in them himself, that to show to others these things seemed an employment to which he might, as in fact he did, give his whole life and soul. But alas! he has got so familiar with it all; the work has become such a routine, that all the old zest and glow and enthusiasm are gone, and he too has become a mere professional guide. God help him and all such! This is the peril.

II. THE SAFEGUARD is, by continual meditation, prayer, and obedience to the Lord, to maintain the freshness, the force, and the "first love." And this safeguard is sure. - S.C.

Parallel Verses
KJV: Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul.

WEB: Praise Yahweh, all you works of his, in all places of his dominion. Praise Yahweh, my soul!

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