Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father…
— A coal merchant in one of our American cities was approached by a minister in regard to the salvation of his soul. The merchant declared it an impossibility for him ever to become a Christian. He gave as a reason his mode of business. For a long term of years, he had, according to a too general custom, given short weight. He had thus grown rich, and now felt the inconsistency of seeking religion without restitution. This was impossible: many of his customers were dead, others beyond his knowledge. The thought of the poor who had paid for coal they never received rested heavily on him. He asked the minister if he thought the substitution of a gift to the poor would be acceptable to God. The minister advised him to try it. A large donation, more than equal in amount of his unjust gains, was accordingly made, and the merchant sought God in earnest. He was happily converted, and is to-day a prominent member of the Church.
Parallel VersesKJV: Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
WEB: Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and don't begin to say among yourselves, 'We have Abraham for our father;' for I tell you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones!