Another gem from Octavius Winslow:
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.” Hebrews 3:12.
Observe to what cause He traces all departure from God—unbelief. This is the sin which, in another place, he exhorts the Christian to “lay aside,” as “the sin which does so easily beset us.” What is the easy besetting sin of every child of God? Let any believer testify. Ask him to point to his most subtle, constant, powerful, and dangerous foe. Ask him what has the most easy access to his mind; what most entangles his feet, and so impedes him in the race that is set before him; what has most easily and frequently vanquished him; what has brought most distress to his soul, and dishonor to God—and he will unhesitatingly reply, “My evil heart of unbelief.” He may have constitutional infirmities, and be assailed by peculiar temptations, and may yield to “presumptuous sins,” and these, in secret and close transaction with God, may cause him deep bitterness and humiliation of soul. But the sin which does so easily and so perpetually beset him is the sin of unbelief, the fruitful cause of all other sin. For as faith is the parent of all holiness, so is unbelief the parent of all unholiness.