‘And Amaziah said to the man of God, But what shall we do for the hundred talents which I have given to the army of Israel?’ etc.
The subject brought before us in the text is the weighing of consequences.
I. The great principle which should guide all wise Christian people with regard to the consideration of consequences is this: Wherever we are sure that duty leads, wherever we are sure that God bids us go, then that way we should go, whatever and however painful the consequences may be. The rule is that we are to do right, and as for the consequences, leave them with God.
II. We are to do this humbly; we are not to do it in any strength of our own, but in simple reliance on the promised grace of God.—The grand thing is, not that a man should say that he will go on in the path of duty, whatever loss that may bring him, but that those around him should see that he is going on in the path of duty, though that should not be the path of worldly gain.
III. This subject is a most practical one.—The time will often come in which we see plainly enough what is the path of duty, but are tempted to ask, What shall we do for the hundred talents? There can be no doubt that in this world honesty is often the very worst policy. But in the long run no man will ever lose by obeying God’s bidding; and, just as assuredly, no man will ever gain by disobeying it.
‘God cannot be in fellowship with us if we can tolerate fellowship with the ungodly. We must choose between the two. If we can renounce all creature aid, and trust simply in the eternal God, there is no limit to the victories He will achieve; but if, turning from Him, we hold out our hand toward the world, we forfeit His aid. Oh, child of God! let not the army of Israel go with thee. Do not adopt worldly policy, methods, or partners. However strong you make yourself for the battle, in alliance with these, you will fail. Indeed, God Himself will make you fall before the enemy, that you may be driven back to Himself. But you say that you have already entered into so close an alliance that you cannot draw back. You have invested your capital, you have gone to great expenditure. But it will be better to forfeit these than Him. Without these and with God beside you, you will be able to rout Edom, and smite ten thousand men. Would that men knew the absolute deliverance which God will effect for those whose hearts are perfect towards Him!’