The Shepherd's Voice: Which Will Keep Us, Shrewness?

 •  1 min. read  •  grade level: 7
There are tests of holiness, of truth, of Aspect for the Word of God, which enable a "sheep" to discern the voice of the Good Shepherd. It may not be able to say what another's voice is; but till it recognizes the voice of the Good Shepherd, it fears to follow. A stranger will they not follow, because they know not the voice of strangers.
He who has no such safeguard must judge the thing himself, for himself, by his own acuteness. If the pretender is cleverer than he, he is deceived. How often is this the case! Nay, in many cases he is predisposed by false motives toward error and deceit; for unholy motives and deceit coalesce. At any rate he has no safeguard but his own acuteness, and he may easily fall. Now the godly, serious, simple-hearted man has the safeguard. If it is not what his soul knows as truth, or according to it, he does not receive it. No new truth ever upsets old truth, but builds upon it—they mutually confirm each other. How many shrewd ones receive false Christs! How many simple ones refused the Judases and Theudases, and received Christ! How many clever shrewd men have received the most monstrous imposture ever palmed on infatuated man—that of Mormonism! A simple-hearted believer escapes because he has got what guards him from the motives which lead a man to receive it.... The capacity of shrewdness to escape is not... what places a soul in safety.