Now the gospel signifies good news and glad tidings: “Behold I bring you,” said the angel, “glad tidings of great joy.” Mean and contemptible as the office of a preacher may be thought now, the angels were glad of the commission to preach this gospel. Thomas Goodwin, that learned pious soul, says in his familiar way that God has but one Son and made a minister of him. And I add, he made an itinerant minister of him too. Some say that you must not preach the law. But you cannot preach the gospel without preaching the law; for you shall find, by and by, we are to preach something that the people must be saved by: it is impossible to tell them how they are to be saved, unless we tell them what they are to be saved from. The way the Spirit of God takes, is like that we take in preparing the ground. Do you think any farmers would have a crop of corn next year unless they plough now? You may as well expect a crop of corn on unploughed ground, as a crop of grace, until the soul is convinced of its being undone without a Savior … They serve Christ as the young man served the Jews that laid hold of him, who, when he found he was to be a prisoner for following Christ, left his garments; and so some people leave their profession. That makes me so cautious now, which I was not thirty years ago, of dubbing people converts so soon. I love now to wait a little, and see if people bring forth fruit; for there are so many blossoms which March winds you know blow away, that I cannot believe they are converts till I see fruit brought forth.
*Excerpted from George Whitefield Daily Readings, p. 224 (Christian Heritage, 2010).
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