HAIL & FIRE - a resource for Reformed and Gospel Theology in the works, exhortations, prayers, and apologetics of those who have maintained the Gospel and expounded upon the Scripture as the Eternal Word of God and the sole authority in Christian doctrine.
"Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth." 1 Corinthians 8:1 KJV
"Let all things be done unto edifying." 1 Corinthians 14:26 KJV
"For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God: ye are Godís husbandry, ye are Godís building. According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. ... For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord. Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God. And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another. For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?" 1 Corinthians 3:4-11; 4:4-7 KJV
ON THE SCRIPTURES
"You will likewise find advantage, by attending as much as you can on those preachers whom God has blessed with much power, life, and success in their ministry. And in this you will do well not to confine yourself to any denomination or party for the Spirit of the Lord is not confined. Different men have different gifts and talents. I would not wish you to be a slavish admirer of any man. Christ alone is our Master and Teacher. But study the excellencies of each: and if you observe a fault in any (for no human models are perfect), you will see what you are yourself to avoid."
HOME > Exhortations > You Are All Brethren, An Exhortation to Pastoral Humility (excerpt from "The Reformed Pastor" by Richard Baxter, section on "The Use of Humiliation," Originally Published in 1656, 1860 Edition)
You Are All Brethren
Excerpt on vain glory and pride in ministers, from the book:
by Richard Baxter
1615-1691ad, English Puritan Preacher and Minister
And so high are our spirits, that when it becomes a duty to any man to reprove or contradict us, we are commonly impatient both of the matter and of the manner. We love the man that will say as we say, and be of our opinion, and promote our reputation, though he be less worthy of our love in other respects;
I confess I have often wondered at it, that this most heinous sin should be made so light of, and thought so consistent with a holy frame of heart and life, when far lesser sins are by ourselves proclaimed to be so damnable in our people! And more have I wondered to see the difference between ungodly sinners and godly preachers in this respect. When we speak to drunkards, worldlings, or any ignorant, unconverted men, we disgrace them as in that condition to the utmost, and lay it on as plainly as we can speak, and tell them of their sin, and shame, and misery: and we expect, not only that they should bear all patiently, but take all thankfully, and we have good reasons for all this; and most that I deal with do take it patiently; and many gross sinners will commend the closest preachers most, and will say that they care not for hearing a man that will not tell them plainly of their sins. But if we speak to a godly minister against his errors or any sin - if we honour them and reverence them, and speak as smoothly as we are able to speak - yea, if we mix commendations with our contradictions or reproofs, if the applause be not apparently predominant, so as to drown all the force of the reproof or confutation, and if it be not more an applause than a reprehension, they take it as an injury almost insufferable. That is considered railing against them that would be no better than flattery in them to the common people, though the cause may be as great.
Brethren, I know this is a sad and harsh confession; but that all this should be so among us, should be more grievous to us than to be told of it. Could this nakedness be hid, I should not have disclosed it,
Yet I must needs say, that it is not all that I intend. To the praise of grace be it spoken, we have some among us here, and I doubt not but it is so in other parts, that are eminent in humility, and lowliness, and condescension, and exemplary herein to their flocks and to their brethren; and it is their glory, and shall be their glory; and maketh them truly honourable and amiable in the eyes of God and themselves: and oh that the rest of us were but such! But, alas! this is not the case of all.
Oh that the Lord would lay us at His feet, in the tears of unfeigned sorrow for this sin! Brethren, may I take leave a little to expostulate this case with my own heart and you, that we may
Alas! what is it that we have to be proud of? Of our bodies? Why, are they not made of the like materials as the brutes, and must they not shortly be as loathsome and abominable as the dung? Is it of our graces? Why, the more we are proud of them, the less we have to be proud of. And when so much of the nature of grace is in humility, it is a great absurdity to be proud of it. Is it of our learning, knowledge, abilities, and gifts? Why, surely if we have any knowledge at all, we must needs know much reason to be humble; and if we
What a sad case is it, that so vile a sin is no more easily discerned by us! But many that are most proud, can blame it in others, and take no notice of it in themselves. The world takes notice of some among us that they have aspiring minds, and seek for the highest rooms, and must be rulers, and bear the sway wherever they come, or else there is no standing before them. No man must contradict them that will not partake of the fruits of their indignation. In any consultations,
For what is true holiness but a devotedness to God, and a living to Him? And what is a wicked and damnable state, but a devotedness to our carnal selves, and a living to ourselves? And doth any man live more to himself, or less to God, than the proud?
An excerpt from "The Reformed Pastor," by Richard Baxter.
"But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted." Matthew 23:5-12 KJV