Dislike of dogma is an epidemic which is just now doing great harm, and especially among young people. . . . It produces what I must venture to call . . . a “jelly-fish” Christianity . . . a Christianity without bone, or muscle, or power. . . . Alas! It is a type of much of the religion of this day, of which the leading principle is, “no dogma, no distinct tenets, no positive doctrine.”
We have hundreds of “jellyfish” clergyman, who seem not to have a single bone in their body of divinity. They have no definite opinions . . . they are so afraid of “extreme views” that they have no views of all.
We have thousands of “jellyfish” sermons preached every year, sermons without an edge, or a point, or corner, smooth as billiard balls, awakening no sinner, and edifying no saint. . . .
And worst of all, we have myriads of “jellyfish” worshipers—respectable Church-gone people, who have no distinct and definite views about any point in theology. They cannot discern things that differ, any more than colorblind people can distinguish colors. . . . They are “tossed to and fro, like children, by every wind of doctrine”; . . . ever ready for new things, because they have no firm grasp on the old.
J. C. Ryle, Principles for Churchmen (London: William Hunt, 8 1084), 97–98. Quoted in J. I. Packer, Faithfulness and Holiness, 72–73.
“Love to the Lord Jesus Christ is no hidden, secret, impalpable thing. It is like the light–it will be seen. It is like sound–it will be heard. It is like heat–it will be felt. Where it exists, it cannot be hid. Where it cannot be seen, you may be sure there is none.” – Holiness by J. C. Ryle p. 312
Some people are living their lives as they please, thinking that one day, when they grow old, maybe even on their death bed they will finally turn to God so that they will escape hell and go to heaven. But such an idea is faulty at best, damning at worst.
“You may say, perhaps, ‘It is never too late to repent.’ I answer–‘That is right enough: but late repentance is seldom true. And I say farthur, you cannot be certain if you put off repenting, you will repent at all.’
You may say, ‘Why should I be afraid?–the penitent thief was saved.’
I answer–‘That is true: but look again at the passage which tells you that the other thief was lost.'”
– J. C. Ryle Holiness p. 236
Turn to God today, do not wait.
“Hell, hell fire, the damnation of hell, eternal damnation, the resurrection of the damnation, everlasting fire, the place of torment, destruction, outer darkness, the worm that never dies, the fire that is not quenched, the place of weeping and gnashing of teeth, everlasting punishment–these, these are the words which the Lord Jesus Christ himself employs. Away with the miserable nonsense which people talk in this day, who tell us that the ministers of the gospel should never speak of hell….he who would follow the example of Christ must speak of hell.” – J.C. Ryle Holiness p. 222