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Quotes on the subject of Zeal


  • There is no greater sign of a general decay of virtue in a nation, than a want of zeal in its inhabitants for the good of their country.
  • Zealous, yet modest; innocent, though free;
    Patient of toil; serene amidst alarms;
    Inflexible in faith; invincible in arms.
  • Awake, my soul! stretch every nerve,
    And press with vigour on;
    A heavenly race demands thy zeal,
    And an immortal crown.
  • I remember a passage in Goldsmith's Vicar of Wakefield, which he was afterwards fool enough to expunge: "I do not love a man who is zealous for nothing."
  • A Spirit, zealous, as he seemed, to know
    More of the Almighty's works, and chiefly Man,
    God's latest image.
  • But his zeal
    None seconded, as out of season judged,
    Or singular and rash.
  • Zeal moved thee;
    To please thy gods thou didst it!
  • Zeal is that pure and heavenly flame,
    The fire of love supplies ;
    While that which often bears the name,
    Is self in a disguise.

    True zeal is merciful and mild,
    Can pity and forbear ;
    The false is headstrong, fierce and wild,
    And breathes revenge and war.

    • John Newton, in Olney Hymns, Hymn 70 : True and False Zeal
  • It is good to be zealously affected always in a good thing, and not only when I am present with you.
  • I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
  • Zeal then, not charity, became the guide.
  • I have more zeal than wit.
  • Poets heap virtues, painters gems, at will,
    And show their zeal, and hide their want of skill.
  • Der Freunde Eifer ist's, der mich
    Zu Grunde richtet, nicht der Hass der Feinde.
    • The zeal of friends it is that razes me,
      And not the hate of enemies.
  • We do that in our zeal our calmer moment would be afraid to answer.
  • Terms ill defined, and forms misunderstood,
    And customs, when their reasons are unknown,
    Have stirred up many zealous souls
    To fight against imaginary giants.


  • I would have every zealous man examine his heart thoroughly, and I believe he will often find that what be calls a zeal for his religion is either pride, interest, or ill-repute.
  • If our zeal were true and genuine we should be much more angry with a sinner than a heretic.
  • There is nothing in which men more deceive themselves than in what they call zeal.
  • Whether zeal or moderation be the point we aim at, let us keep fire out of the one and frost out of the other.
  • The zeal which begins with hypocrisy must conclude in treachery; at first it deceives, at last it betrays.
  • Never let your zeal outrun your charity. The former is but human, the latter is divine.
  • Nothing has wrought more prejudice to religion, or brought more disparagement upon truth, than boisterous and unseasonable zeal.
  • Through zeal, knowledge is gotten; through lack of zeal, knowledge is lost; let a man who knows the double path of gain and loss thus place himself that knowledge may grow.
  • Zeal's a dreadful termagant,
    That teaches saints to tear and cant.
  • Experience shows that success is due less to ability than to zeal. The winner is he who gives himself to his work, body and soul.
  • True zeal is an ignis lambeus, a soft and gentle flame, that will not scorch one's hand.
  • It is a zealot's faith that blasts the shrines of the false god, but builds no temple to the true.
  • Zeal without humility is like a ship without a rudder, liable to be stranded at any moment.
  • It is admirably remarked, by a most excellent writer, that zeal can no more hurry a man to act in direct opposition to itself than a rapid stream can carry a boat against its own current.
  • There is no zeal blinder than that which is inspired with a love of justice against offenders.
  • Zeal is a volcano, the peak of which the grass of indecisiveness does not grow.
  • Zeal, unless it be rightly guided, when it endeavors the most busily to please God, forceth upon Him those unseasonable offices which please Him not.
  • A single zealot may commence prosecutor, and better men be his victims.
  • Every deviation from the rules of charity and brotherly love, of gentleness and forbearance, of meekness and patience, which our Lord prescribes to his disciples, however it may appear to be founded on an attachment to Him and zeal for His service, is in truth a departure from the religion of Him, "the Son of Man," who "came not to destroy men's lives, but to save them."
  • A father or a brother may be hated zealously, and loved civilly or naturally.
  • Nothing can be fairer, or more noble, than the holy fervor of true zeal.
  • Zeal without knowledge is like expedition to a man in the dark.
  • It is false zeal to keep truth while wounding charity.
  • Not the zeal alone of those who seek Him proves God, but the blindness of those who seek Him not.
  • It is a coal from God's altar must kindle our fire; and without fire, true fire, no acceptable sacrifice.
  • Zeal is very blind, or badly regulated, when it encroaches upon the rights of others.
  • People are zealous for a cause when they are not quite positive that it is true.
  • A just cause and a zealous defender make an imperious resolution cut off the tediousness of cautious discussions.
  • Do not too many believe no zeal to be spiritual but what is censorious or vindictive? Whereas no zeal is spiritual that is not also charitable.
  • Violent zeal for truth has a hundred to one odds to be either petulancy, ambition, or pride.
  • He that does a base thing in zeal for his friend burns the golden thread that ties their hearts together.
  • Some things will not bear much zeal; and the more earnest we are about them, the less we recommend ourselves to the approbation of sober and considerate men.
  • Zeal is fit for wise men, but flourishes chiefly among fools.
    • John Tillotson
    • Variant: Zeal is fit only for the wise but is found mostly in fools.
  • Press bravely onward! — not in vain
    Your generous trust in human kind;
    The good which bloodshed could not gain
    Your peaceful zeal shall find.

External links

Look up Zeal in Wiktionary, the free dictionary