“If you here stop, and ask yourselves, why you are not as pious as the primitive Christians were, your own heart will tell you, that it is neither through ignorance nor through inability, but purely because you never thoroughly intended it.”
–William Law (1686-1761), A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life, c. II (1728)
We have more resources than they did. Life is easier than theirs was. We have the complete New Testament for our guidance. The Bible is widely available. Persecution occurs in some places, but many of us are free from it.
So if we are not as dedicated as they, if the church doesn’t grow today as it did then, if God doesn’t do great things through us as he did through them, only one explanation suffices: the fault lies within ourselves.
This, then, calls not for self-pity, but repentance.