John Owen – The Severity of God in Dealing with Sinful Nations 2

There are very few {pastors} who will be at the charge of carrying on this work {of reformation}. They may quickly find what it will cost them; for unless they are exemplary in it themselves, it is in vain once to attempt the pressing of it upon others. They cannot go about it without great retrenchings of that which they have esteemed their liberty in the course of their conversations. All compliance with unreformed persons, for secular ends; all conformity unto the course of the world, in jollities and pride of
life; all ostentation of riches, wealth, and power; all self-seeking and self-pleasing; all lightness and carnal confidences, — must utterly be cast away.
And not only so, but unless, by incessant prayers and supplications, with earnestness and perseverance, they labor for fresh anointing with the Spirit of grace in their own souls, that faith, and love, and zeal for God, and compassion for the souls of men, and readiness for the cross, may revive and flourish in them, — they will not be useful, nor instrumental in this work.

The Goodness and Severity of God in Dealing With Sinful Nations 2 of 2