Sunday, June 14, 2009

Mr. Wet-Eyes

Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, because they keep not thy law. (Psalm 119.136)

Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people! (Jeremiah 9.1)

Alexander Whyte, Bunyan Characters (Third Series), Chap. XIX, Mr. Wet-Eyes, pp. 157-158:

Spiritual preaching; real face to face, inward, verifiable, experimental, spiritual preaching; preaching to a heart in the agony of its sanctification; preaching to men whose whole life is given over to making them a new heart -- that kind of preaching is scarcely ever heard in our day. There is great intellectual ability in the pulpit of our day, great scholarship, great eloquence, and great earnestness, but spiritual preaching, preaching to the spirit -- 'wet-eyed' preaching -- is a lost art. At the same time, if that living art is for the present overlaid and lost, the literature of a deeper spiritual day abides to us, and our spiritually-minded people are not confined to us, they are not dependent on us. Well, this is the Communion week with us yet once more. Will you not, then, make it the beginning of some of the suppletory arts and stratagems of the spiritual life with yourselves? I cannot preach as I would like on such subjects, but I can tell you who could, and who, though dead, yet speak by their immortal books. You have the wet-eyed psalms; but they are beyond the depth of most people. Their meaning seems to us on the surface, and we all read and sing them, but let us not therefore think that we understand them. I cannot compel you to read the books, and to read little else but the books, that would in time, and by God's blessing, lead you into the depths of the psalms; but I can wash my hands so far in making their names so many household words among my people. The Way to Christ, the Imitation of Christ, the Theologica Germanica, Tauler's Sermons, the Mortification of Sin, and Indwelling Sin in Believers, the Saint's Rest, the Holy Living and Dying, the Privata Sacra, the Private Devotions, the Serious Call, the Christian Perfection, the Religious Affections, and such like. All that, and you still unqualified! All that, and your eyes still dry!

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