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By William Law

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Example text

Here our blessed Lord commands us to strive to enter in because many will fail who only seek to enter. By which we are plainly taught that religion is a state of labor and striving, and that many will fail of their salvation, not because they took no pains or care about it, but because they did not take pains and care enough; they only sought, but did not strive to enter in. Every Christian, therefore, should as well examine his life by these doctrines as by the commandments. For these doctrines are as plain marks of our condition as the commandments are plain marks of our duty.

For these doctrines are as plain marks of our condition as the commandments are plain marks of our duty. For if salvation is only given to those who strive for it, then it is as reasonable for me to consider whether my course of life be a course of striving to obtain it as to consider whether I am keeping any of the commandments. If my religion is only a formal compliance with those modes of worship that are in fashion where I live; if it costs me no pains or trouble; if it lays me under no rules and restraints; if I have no careful thoughts and sober reflections about it, is it not great weakness to think that I am striving to enter in at the strait gate?

But they must consider, that, as the world and all worldly prosessions as truly belong to God, as persons and things that are devoted to the altar, so it is as much the duty of men in worldly business to live wholly unto God, as it is the duty of those who are devoted to Divine service. As the whole world is God's, so the whole world is to act for God. As all men, have the same relation to God, as all men have all their powers and faculties from God, so all men are obliged to act for God, with all their powers and faculties.

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