“He that is truly holy, he loves the word, and is affected and taken with the word for its holiness and purity. But some are taken with the word, as it seems to tickle their ears and please their fancies. Some are affected with sermons because of the elegancy of the style, delicacy of the words and gracefulness of the deliver. And these deal by sermons as many men do with nosegays, that are made up of many picked sweet flowers, who, after they have smelt them a while, cast them into a corner. So these, after they have commended a sermon, they cast away the sermon; they smell to the sermon, and say it is sweet, it is sweet, and presently they throw it by, as a nosegay that is withered, and of no further use.
When a man that is sick, crazy, and unsound, is at a table that is furnished with a variety of dishes, you know he easily and readily passes over all the most wholesome and nourishing dishes, and falls a-piddling and picking here and there upon the kickshaws and puff-paste. That have little or no substance in them. So unsound, unholy hearts, when God hath prepared his table, and made a feast of fat things for their souls in the ministry of the word, they can easily and readily pass over those sound, solid, and savory truths that are prepared for their strength and nourishment, and fall a-piddling and picking upon some new coined phrases, or some quaint expression, or some seraphical notions: and no wonder, for they are not sound within, they are under a great distemper: as the Israelites would not be satisfied with wholesome diet, but they must needs have quails as their picking meat: well, they had them, and whilst they were at their picking meat, the wrath of God came upon them. The application is as easy as it is dreadful. But now a holy heart savors the word, as it is a holy word, a substantial word, a pure word, a clean word, and as it begets holiness, and cherishes holiness, and increases holiness, and as it works towards the completing and perfecting of holiness.
Thomas Brooks - Photo by Elena Getzieh