Biblical Counseling, Humble, Humbleness, humility, Precious Remedies Against Satans Devices, Sin, The Unsearchable Riches of Christ, Thomas Brooks
The previous post in this series may be found here: https://memoirandremains.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/the-unsearchable-riches-of-christ-11/
A humble soul sees sin as rebellion against God. Rather than justify himself before God, making excuses for sin, he sees sin for what it is. Thus,
The ninth property of an humble soul is this, It will smite and strike for small sins as well as for great, for those the world count no sin, as well as for those that they count gross sins.
A proud heart counts great sins small, and small sins no sins, and so disarms conscience for a time of its whipping and wounding power; but at death, or in hell, conscience will take up an iron rod, with which it will lash the sinner for ever; and then, though too late, the sinner shall acknowledge his little sins to be very great, and his great sins to be exceeding grievous and odious, &c.
Brooks made a similar point in Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices: One excuse which leads to sin is the habit of making sins seem small: this is no great sin and thus I need not worry. A humble man would never think such a thing. One “remedy” offered by Brooks speaks to this:
The third remedy against this third device that Satan hath to draw the soul to sin, is solemnly to consider, That it is sad to stand with God for a trifle. Dives would not give a crumb, therefore he should not receive a drop, Luke 16:21. It is the greatest folly in the world to adventure the going to hell for a small matter. ‘I tasted but a little honey,’ said Jonathan, ‘and I must die,’ 1 Sam. 14:29. It is a most unkind and unfaithful thing to break with God for a little. Little sins carry with them but little temptations to sin, and then a man shews most viciousness and unkindness, when he sins on a little temptation. It is devilish to sin without a temptation; it is little less than devilish to sin on a little occasion. The less the temptation is to sin, the greater is that sin.1 Saul’s sin in not staying for Samuel, was not so much in the matter, but it was much in the malice of it; for though Samuel had not come at all, yet Saul should not have offered sacrifice; but this cost him dear, his soul and kingdom.
It is the greatest unkindness that can be shewed to a friend, to adventure the complaining, bleeding, and grieving of his soul upon a light and a slight occasion. So it is the greatest unkindness that can be shewed to God, Christ, and the Spirit, for a soul to put God upon complaining, Christ upon bleeding, and the Spirit upon grieving, by yielding to little sins. Therefore, when Satan says it is but a little one, do thou answer, that often times there is the greatest unkindness shewed to God’s glorious majesty, in the acting of the least folly, and therefore thou wilt not displease thy best and greatest friend, by yielding to his greatest enemy.
1 It was a vexation to king Lysimachus, that his staying to drink one small draught of water lost him his kingdom; and so it will eternally vex some souls at last that for one little sin, compared with great transgressions, they have lost God, heaven, and their souls for ever. [Plutarch. Cf. Bp. Jeremy Taylor, vol. iv. p. 457. (Eden).—G.]