A Sermon Delivered by ELWOOD DEAN, Place Unknown, 5th Month 30, 1876.
Letters and Memoranda of Elwood Dean, 1909.
This is The Quaker Homiletics Online Anthology, Part 3: The 19th Century
"The kingdom of Heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened." Thus it is with the measure of Divine grace given to each and every individual to profit withal. When this is allowed to have its full place, and perfect work in the heart, it entirely changes our nature, as the leaven does the meal, and brings forth the new birth unto righteousness, without which no man can see the kingdom of God, and of course cannot be saved. But as we submit to this transforming power we become changed from a state of nature to a state of grace; from hardness and depravity of heart, to tenderness and contrition; from the state of the ravening wolf or the destroying lion, to that of the little child; from that of the law to that of the Gospel; from that of loving our neighbor and hating our enemy, to that of loving even our enemies according to the doctrine of Christ, who said, "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven; for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust." This leads us to be kind one unto another, tender hearted, loving one another and forgiving one another even as God, for Christ's sake, hath forgiven us. "Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given Himself for us." Now, my beloved young Friends, although you may have formed good resolutions, and entered into covenant again and again, and still have broken them, yet I have felt the desire for your that you might lift up your heads in hope and let the times past suffice and seek to renew your covenants with your Heavenly Father, "for we have a merciful High Priest, who was touched with a feeling of our infirmities, being tempted in all points as we are, yet without sin."