"To mortify a sin is not utterly to kill, root it out, and destroy it, that it should have no more hold at all nor residence in our hearts. It is true this is that which is aimed at; but this is not in this life to be accomplished.
There is no man that truly sets himself to mortify any sin, but he aims at, intends, desires its utter destruction, that it should leave neither root nor fruit in the heart or life."*Have I succeeded in mortifying a sin if I am able to disguise my sin, dissimulate it, and not allow it to affect others? Think again.
"I think I need not say it is not the dissimulation of a sin. When a man on some outward respects forsakes the practice of any sin, men perhaps may look on him as a changed man. God knows that to his former iniquity he hath added cursed hypocrisy,"*This morning I prayed Ephesians 5:8-15 for myself and for my loved ones:
for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,*From John Owen's The Mortification of Sin, chapter V, "The Principal Intendment of the Whole Discourse Proposed."
"Awake, O sleeper,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you."
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.