Remember Lot's wife.
I. WHAT ARE WE TO REMEMBER ABOUT LOT'S WIFE? Her sin, and her punishment. A sudden and a deadly stroke was dealt her, for her sin of apostasy.
II. WHY ARE WE TO REMEMBER LOT'S WIFE?
1. Because her example is recorded for that purpose.
2. For our warning.
3. That we fall not into the same condemnation.
III. HOW ARE WE TO REMEMBER LOT'S WIFE?
3. With holy fear, reverence, and adoration.
IV. WHAT AND WHEN IS THE SPECIAL TIME THAT LOT'S WIFE IS TO BE REMEMBERED BY US? It is good to remember her frequently; but we are in a special manner to remember Lot's wife in the time of declining; in declining times remember her that you do not decline. Thus our Saviour Christ brings her in for to be remembered by us, that we do not look back, as she looked back. We are to remember her in times of security, of great security. She is to be remembered by us also, in time when God doth call upon His people by His dispensations to go out of Sodom, and make no delay; for so our Saviour also presses it to you, "Let not him that is on the housetop go down," etc., but "remember Lot's wife." God would have no delay then: so when God calls upon a people to come out of Sodom; make no delay, but "remember Lot's wife." Thus we see what the time is.
V. WHAT GOOD SHALL WE GET BY REMEMBERING LOT'S WIFE? Is there any good to be gotten by remembering Lot's wife? Yes, much every way: Something in a way of instruction, something in a way of caution.
1. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory, then, why should not we stand and admire, and say, Lord, how unsearchable are Thy judgments, and Thy ways past finding out? Here are four, and but four that came out of Sodom, and yet one of the four were destroyed. God may deliver our family in the time of common calamity, and yet some of our house may suffer. God in the midst of judgment doth remember mercy; in the midst of mercy He remembers judgment.
2. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory, then here we may learn by way of instruction, and see how far a man or woman may go in religion, and yet come short at the last.
3. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory; then you may learn and see by way of instruction; that the best relations will not secure from the hand of God, if we continue evil.
4. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do indeed live in our memory, then here you may see what an evil thing it is to look back upon that which God hath delivered us from.
5. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and live in our memory; here we may learn by way of instruction, that former deliverance will not secure us from future destruction: she was delivered with a great deliverance, and yet destroyed with a great destruction.
6. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and live in our memory, then here we may learn by way of instruction: it is ill sinning when God is punishing; it is good begging while God is giving: but oh, it is ill sinning while God is punishing.
7. If this story be true, and live in your memory, then here you may learn, that those that are exemplary in sinning, shall be exemplary in punishing.
8. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory; then here we may see what an evil thing it is to mischoose in our choosing time.
9. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory; then here we may see by way of instruction, that though God will lay out an hiding-place for His people, in times of public calamity; yet if they sin in the way, they may perish or miscarry in the very face of their hiding-place.
10. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory; then here we may learn by way of instruction, that it is possible that a religious family may have a black mark of God's indignation.
11. And the main of all is this. If the story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our memory: oh, what an evil thing is it to look back, and to decline in declining times. How quick was God with Lot's wife for looking back. She never sinned this sin before; it was the first sin that ever in this kind she committed; and she might have said: "Why, Lord, it is the first time that ever I committed it, and indeed I was taken before I was aware thus to look back: I did not consider well of what I did." But God turned her presently into a pillar of salt; God was quick with her. Why? For to show thus much, God will be quick with apostates. And thus I have given you these things by way of instruction.
12. As many I might give you in a way of caution, but to instance only in one. If this story of Lot's wife be true, and do live in our remembrance; by way of caution, why should we not all take heed how we look back to worldly interests, in the day when the Son of Man shall be revealed, or in this day of the gospel when the Son of Man is revealed. You see what became of Lot's wife for her looking back; and therefore why should we not all of us take heed how we look back or decline, in this day that the Son of Man is revealed?
VI. You will say, WHAT SHALL WE DO THAT WE MAY NOT DECLINE; what shall we do that we may so remember Lot's wife, that we may not decline, or look back in declining times?
1. If you would not look back in declining times, shut your eyes and your ears against all the allurements and threatenings of the world.
2. If you would not look back in declining times, consider, in the fear of the Lord, what an evil thing it is to look back. Thereby you lose all you have wrought, thereby you will lose all your losses. There is much gain in losing for Jesus Christ. By looking back you will lose all the losses and the gain thereby. Thereby you will lose the testimony of your own integrity. Yet, saith God, Job held fast his integrity. Thereby, also, you will lose the comfort of those glorious times that are to come.
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