An unwatchful church will soon become an unholy church. A church which does not carefully guard the truth as it is in Jesus, will become an unsound church, and, consequently, a degenerate church. It will grieve the Holier Spirit, and cause him to remove his power from the ministry and his presence from the ordinances. It will open the door for Satan, and he is quite sure to avail himself of every opportunity of doing mischief. I believe that the only way after all in any church, to purge out heresy in it, is by having more of the inner life; by this fire in Zion shall the chaff be burned up. When the constitution of a man is thoroughly sound, it throws out many of those diseases which otherwise would have lingered in his system; and good physicians sometimes do not attempt to touch the local disease but they do their best to strengthen the general constitution’ and when that is right, then the cure is wrought. So, here and there, there may be a defalcation in the one point—that of doctrine, or in the other— as to an affair of practice; and so it may be necessary to deal with the disordered limb of doctrine, or you may have to cut out the cancer of an evil custom; but, as a rule, the main cure of a church comes by strengthening its inner life. When we live near to Jesus, when we drink from the fountain-head of eternal truth and purity, when we become personally true and pure, then our watchfulness is, under God, our safeguard, and heresy, false doctrine, and unclean profession are kept far away. Sleeping guards invite the enemy. He who leaves his door unlocked asks the thief to enter. Watchfulness is always profitable, and slothfulness is always dangerous.
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