After posting A Christian’s Prayer I was moved to such a strong conclusion, that I had to commit it to writing. According to the Puritan’s prayer, the value that we place on our salvation directly correlates to the strength that we exhibit in battle. Yes, this sentence is worth reading again.
What does it mean? Our battle is against the snares of sin. We are bombarded each moment of each day with temptations. What do we do with them? How do we win these battles? The Puritan put it plainly by asking for God to help him remember “the dignity of my spiritual release, never be too busy to attend to my soul, never to be so engrossed with time that I neglect the things of eternity.”
The snares of life were mentioned earlier in the prayer as sloth and indolence, enticement of sinners, sensual pleasures, worldly possessions and vanities. All of these things are lures of the heart’s desires. They appeal to our mind in order to arouse our lusts. They beg of us relax and do not agonize, come and taste, long for other’s bodies, seek after temporal things, and be happy with the approval of others. Need I state the obvious? These snares are nothing more than distractions from the eternal prize that we have already received – salvation.
Yes, we are saved and have received Jesus, the greatest gift of all. We have all that we need and should desire. We have the Lord. Is there something else that we lack? To respond positively means that the Lord is not all, that something exists that is greater than he. Is such a thing true? Of course not. Yet, every time we give into these snares we are saying that there is such thing.
When someone (including ourself) suggests that there is more to life than salvation, let us be reminded of this fact. For when we lessen the dignity of salvation (and thereby lessen the dignity of Jesus), we disarm ourselves in the midst of the battle. We stand before our enemy called sin and we have no way to fight him off.
If we buy into this lie, we are sure to fall into sin – again and again. This is an injustice to ourselves. We should prize our salvation as we prize our Lord. When we do, snares are no longer so enticing. Rather, they are appalling.