The Word: Health is not infectious but disease is

Published 1:27 pm Wednesday, November 22, 2023

“If friends will not walk in the narrow way with us, we must not walk in the broad way to please them. Health is not infectious but disease is.” – J.C. Ryle 

The Word

Rev. Cameron J. Bailey

More and more, I see good people veer off the right path onto the wrong one. It saddens this preacher’s heart. We’re challenged to walk the narrow path God set before us. Why is it narrow? Because Jesus is the only way. Most desire the broad path that’s wider and wider with several things that attract, but God’s Word clearly speaks, warns, adamantly proclaims broad ain’t good. In Matthew 7, Jesus beautifully tells these Words: “Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. 14 How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it (Matthew 7:13-14, CSB).” 

I have seen many a good heart and good soul slowly slip and fade out of Church, out of living in God, out of loving what He loves. I have watched these people who once were so strong with a passion to grow and serve stop attending worship. I have watched them stop doing devotions and prayer times. I have watched them start going along with others who tempted slowly by saying “Oh, missing one Sunday won’t matter” without knowing that one Sunday leads to another Sunday which leads to another, etc. I have seen too many young people fall for the trap of “Oh, no one will find out. It’s just one drink”. I have seen too many people slip into the trap of “Oh, you’re fine to drive” knowing they should never have gotten behind the wheel of that car. I have witnessed too many marriages crumble over “oh, it’s just coffee. Nothing will happen.” Slowly but surely many a good person has decided the narrow way isn’t fun enough and they’ve made an exit for the broad way without paying attention to the warning signs or guardrails in place. 

My mom used to always remind my brother and me of how bad company corrupts good character. Little did I know she was proclaiming 1 Corinthians 15:33 over our lives. Mr. Ryle is correct: “If friends will not walk in the narrow way with us, we must not walk in the broad way to please them. Health is not infectious but disease is.” Read that last line of the quote again: Health is not infectious but disease is. Stay the narrow way. Avoid infection. Stay healthy with good people in worship together. Be the good needed. Go narrow…not broad. 

Rev. J. Cameron Bailey is pastor of Kenbridge Christian Church. He can be reached at jamescameronbailey@gmail.com.