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Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection
Imitation: of Good Men Its Limit
Plutarch says that among the Persians those persons were considered most beautiful who were hawk-nosed, for no other reason than that Cyrus had such a nose. In Richard the Third's court humps upon the back were the height of fashion. According as the various potentates who have condescended to rule mankind have lisped, or stuttered, or limped, or squinted, or spoken through their noses, these infirmities have been elevated into graces and commanded the admiration of silly mortals. But is there not more than a possibility that what we ridicule in the kingdoms of earth may have its counterpart in the church? Is there not a tendency among Christians to imitate the spiritual infirmities of their religious leaders, or oftener still of departed saints? We may follow holy men so far as they follow Christ; the mischief is that we do not readily stop where we should, but rather where we should not. Bunyan, Whitfield, Wesley, Calvin, Luther, yes, by all means imitate them: but not indiscriminately, not slavishly, or you will do so ridiculously. One is your Master, to copy him in every jot and tittle will be safe enough.
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Spurgeon, Charles. Entry for 'Imitation: of Good Men Its Limit'. Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/fff/i/imitation-of-good-men-its-limit.html. 1870.
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