Pastoral Calling: an inside look

Men are not led to the Pastoral office as they are induced to select other professions in life they are drawn as a sinner is drawn to Christ by a mighty invincible work of the Spirit. The call of God never fails to be convincing. Men are made to feel that a woe is upon them if they preach not the Gospel. It is not that they love the work for often like Moses they are reluctant to engage in it and love at best can only render its duties pleasant; it is not that they desire the office, though in indulging this desire they seek a good thing; it is not that they are zealous for the glory of God and burn for the salvation of souls for this is characteristic of every true believer nor is it that upon a due estimate of their talents and acquirements they promise themselves more extended usefulness in this department of labour than in any other for no man is anything in the kingdom of Heaven except as God makes him so; but it is that the word of the Lord is like fire in their bones they must preach it or die; they cannot escape from the awful impression which haunts them night and day and banishes all peace from the soul until the will is bowed, that God has laid this work upon them at the hazard of their lives.
– J.H. Thornwell, 1843

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