Friday, April 15, 2011
Owen on Vanity of Mind: "Like a drunkard on a pub crawl"
The Puritan John Owen apparently wrote his book Spiritual-Mindedness, a collection of meditations on Romans 8:6, in 1681 during a time of physical illness. As he lay recovering, Owen was alarmed by the subtle power of the world over his own mind.
In that book he says this about “vanity of mind”:
This vanity of mind will always be with us while we are here on earth. It is always ready to receive impressions from vain and useless things and so is continually tempting the mind to wander from one thing to another. This vanity of mind enjoys earthly things, whether lawful or unlawful. Like a drunkard on a pub crawl, so this vanity of mind is constantly in search of intoxicating worldly pleasures (pp. 239-240).
One reason we need the church, including regular attendance at public worship, is so that we can be “spiritually minded” and resist Satan’s efforts to seduce us into vanity.