Every time we sin, we do as much as say, “I do not acknowledge God to be my sovereign; I will do as I please.” Each time we speak an ill-word we really say, “My tongue is my own, he is not Lord over my lips.” Yea, and everytime the human heart wandereth after evil, and lusteth for that which is forbidden, it attempts to dethrone God, and to set up the Evil One in his place.
The language of sin is “Who is the Lord that I should obey his voice; I will not have God to reign over me.” Sin is a deliberate treason against the majesty of God, an assault upon his crown, an insult offered to his throne. Some sins, especially, have rebelhon written on their forehead—presumptuous sins, when a man’s conscience has been enlightened, and he knows better, and yet still forsakes the good and follows after evil; when a man’s conscience has been aroused through some judgment, or sickness, or under a faithful ministry; if that man returns, like a dog to his vomit, he has, indeed, insulted the sovereignty of God.
But have we not all done this, and are there not some here in particular of whom we once had good hope, but who have turned back again to crooked ways? Are there not some of you who, Sabbath after Sabbath, get your consciences so quickened that you cannot be easy in sin as others are and though you may, perhaps, indulge in sin, yet it costs you very dearly, for you know better? Did I not hear of one who sits in these seats often, but is as often on the ale bench? Did I not hear of another who can sing with us the hymns of Zion, but is equally at home with the lascivious music of the drunkard? Do we not know of some who in their business are anything but what they should be, yet for a show can come up to the house of God? Oh, sirs, oh, sirs, ye do provoke the Lord to jealousy!
Take heed, for when he cometh out of his resting-place, and taketh to himself his sword and buckler, who are you that you should stand before the dread majesty of His presence! Tremble and be still! Humble yourselves, and repent of this your sin.
from ‘A Jealous God’