By Richard Sibbes
Why is it that we do not seek this spiritual life more? Because when the conscience is not awakened, we think there is no such thing: like Judas walking on in the state of nature, in drunkenness, sensual pleasures, covetousness, and such things, until we perish suddenly. If the conscience is awakened, then it is easy to work upon such who sees his misery and desires a remedy. It was easy to persuade Jacob to send for corn in Egypt, when a famine was in the land of Canaan. It is easy to persuade men hungry and thirsty to eat and drink; easy to persuade a weighed down, weary man to lay down his burden and rest. So it’s the same with us. If the conscience is awakened to have a sense of sin, and that intolerable wrath and eternal punishment that is due, we should and would long for this spiritual life.
I urgently ask you, let us believe there is such a life. Look at 1st Peter 1:3. There he blesses God, “who according to his great mercy became our father again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” No one can go to heaven unless they are born again here. The main help is the use of the means. This is that pool of Bethesda, at which if we lie the angel of the covenant will put us in to be healed. Never rest then until this life has gotten into us…[never rest from seeking and looking to God, through His means, I take this to mean things such as praying and reading his word, in expectation of his mercy.]
…Christ is called life, the bread of life, tree of life, and he gives us living water to refresh our souls, not that he is so essentially bread, or a tree, but by the ability of his working in us. For God is life in himself. Therefore he swears by it: “As I live, says the Lord, I do not desire the death of a sinner,” —Ezekiel 33:11. Here we do not consider life so high, but this life must be derived from him principally. It is done so naturally. The Son is the fountain of life, because he is God, who is radically, fundamentally, and essentially life.
[Language modernized in places by this site] [mine]