(Thomas Sherman, “Divine Breathings; Or, a Pious Soul Thirsting after Christ”)
“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen, and lived in luxury every day.” Luke 16:19
How apt are many at the sight of a rich worldling–to envy him for what he has.
But, for my part, I rather pity him for what he lacks!
He has money–but he lacks wisdom to use it wisely;
he has a soul–but it lacks grace;
he has the creature–but he lacks the Creator;
he has a mansion–but he lacks Heaven.
In his life, he floats upon a torrent of vanity–which rolls along into an ocean of vexation!
And after death, it will be said of him, “Take this unprofitable servant, bind him hand and foot, and cast him into outer darkness! Consign his soul to the eternal lake of fire and brimstone!”
Where now is the object of your envy?
It is not his gold which can then rescue him,
nor his mansion which can then satisfy him,
nor his friends who can then comfort him.
Therefore, if he is worth the envying–then who can be worth the pitying?
If this is happiness–then give me misery!
Lord, rather make me poor, with a holy heart–than rich, with an evil heart of unbelief!
“Have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue–because I am in agony in this fire!” Luke 16:24
“Then they will go away to eternal punishment–but the righteous to eternal life!” Matthew 25:46