GEORGE BURROWES: THE CHRISTIAN LIFE IS A SERIES OF REVIVALS
I sleep, but my heart waketh. — Song of Solomon 5:2
Commenting on this text of Scripture, George Burrowes takes occasion to expound upon the nature of the spiritual ups and downs of the Christian life more largely in descriptive terms to which experienced believers can well relate.
This passage, to the end of ver. 8, illustrates the exercises of the soul in a time of spiritual sloth and decay. After thus unfolding to us his love, he lets us, as in this passage, see our depravity and indifference. Our religious life consists of a series of revivals and of withdrawals by Jesus, for calling into exercise and putting to the test our graces. When under the influence of first love, we determine never to forget the Saviour, and think the thing almost impossible. After some experience of the deceitfulness of the heart, when at some subsequent period we have had our souls restored and made to lie down in green pastures, beside the still waters, we resolve again to be faithful in close adherence to our Lord, under the impression, that with our present knowledge of the workings of sin, and the glorious displays made to us of the loveliness of Christ, and of his love towards us personally, we shall now at length persevere; but we soon find to our sorrow, that, left to ourselves, we are as unsteady and unfaithful as ever. It is surprising how quickly coldness will succeed great religious fervour. To the experienced believer it will not appear strange, that this divine allegory should bring this representation of indifference to the beloved into such immediate connection with the remarkable expressions of Jesus' love contained in the foregoing chapter. Where is the Christian who has not found the truth of this in his own experience? The three chosen disciples were overcome with lethargy even on the mount of transfiguration; and immediately after the first affecting sacrament, they not only fell asleep in Gethsemane, but all forsook Jesus and fled; while Peter added thereto a denial of his Lord, with profane swearing. While the bridegroom tarried, even the wise virgins with oil in their lamps, slumbered and slept. After endearing manifestations of Jesus' love, how soon do we find ourselves falling into spiritual slumber — often, like the disciples on the mount, under the full light of the presence of the Holy Spirit. And after periods of revival, in the same way will churches speedily show signs of sinking down into former coldness.
You can read more by George Burrowes at: Authors (B) — Log College Press
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