Thomas Brooks, The Unsearchable Riches of Christ
the exercise and, improvement of grace in your souls, will be more and more the death and ruin of sin in your souls.
Take it from experience; there is not a choicer way than this for a man to bring under the power of his sin, than to keep up the exercise of his grace.
Sin and grace are like two buckets at a well, when one is up the other is down; they are like the two laurels at Rome, when one flourishes the other withers.
Certainly, the readiest and the surest way to bring under the power of sin, is to be much in the exercise of grace:
Rom. 8:10, ‘And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin: but the spirit is life because of righteousness.’ The life and activity of Christ and grace in the soul, is the death and destruction of sin in the soul.
The more grace acts in the soul, the more sin withers and dies in the soul.
The stronger the house of David grew, 2 Sam. 3, the weaker the house of Saul grew. As the house of David grew every day stronger and stronger, so the house of Saul every day grew weaker and weaker.
So the activity of the new man is the death of the old man.
Illustration and application
When Christ began to bestir himself in the temple, the money-changers quickly fled out, Mat. 21:12–14. So when grace is active and stirring in the soul, corruption quickly flies.
A man may find out many ways to hide his sin, but he will never find out any way to subdue his sin, but by the exercise of grace.
Argument from experience
Of all Christians, none so mortified as those in whom grace is most exercised.
Concluding illustration and application
Sin is a viper that must be killed, or it will kill you for ever; and there is no way to kill it but by the exercise of grace.