Withering Paths
Job 8:13
So are the paths of all that forget God; and the hypocrite's hope shall perish:


1. It is a very common sin. Thousands never think of Him except in times of trouble.

2. It is an inexcusable sin. They are dependent upon Him. He is constantly revealing Himself to them.

(1) In nature. Physical sequences have a living agent behind them; link after link of causation, but held and moved by a living hand. Law has no life. Natural agitations are the rustling of God's garments as He works.

(2) In events. They are the tramp of the Everlasting. History is full of the interpositions of the Supreme.

(3) In Christ. Here, God became as one of us, that we might know Him.

(4) By His Spirit. Men's souls are disturbed by His presence within them.

3. It is a sin of God's children (Jeremiah 11:31). We should live to Him every waking hour. Nothing should be too trifling about which to talk to Him.

II. TO FORGET GOD IS RUINOUS. Our life paths fade away like the rush without mire and the flag without water.

1. The path of inner progress. Men feel that without God they make no moral advancement. True manliness withers; they become moral skeletons. Truth, moral vitality, courage for the right, honour, integrity, all fade away from them, and they are like a withered rush. No one is self-adequate. God is the fountain of life. The highest archangel would cry, as he looked towards the Life-giver of the universe, "All my springs are in Thee." The forces of death within us surely conquer, unless they are subdued by the incomings of God's life.

2. The path of outward actualities. The way of life yields little true joy if God be forgotten. There may be worldly success without it. A man may get rich or high-positioned, but he fails to gain the highest satisfactions.

3. The path of posthumous influence. The way of life is impressionable. We all leave footprints upon it. The footprints of the good are more lasting than the evil. Evil is everywhere to be rooted up. It is a fact that the influence of the good is more permanent than the evil. Compare the influence of Alexander and Socrates, Nero and Paul, Queen Mary and Knox, Voltaire and Wesley, etc. The good parent and the wicked one. The name of the wicked shall rot. Think of the folly of forgetting Him. Why should you do this, and die? The withering of a flower may awaken a sigh; the fading away of an oak a tear; but what sorrow should there be over a man fading away into a demon!

(W. Osborne Lilley.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: So are the paths of all that forget God; and the hypocrite's hope shall perish:

WEB: So are the paths of all who forget God. The hope of the godless man shall perish,

The Sin of Hypocrisy
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