Friday, July 31, 2009
The great thing to a Christian is, not the fate of earthly empires, but the state of the heavenly kingdom. As to what is to become of this principality or that empire, what have you and I to do with these things? We are the servants of a spiritual King, whose kingdom is not of this world. Let the potsherds strive with the potsherds of the earth, and break each other as they will; our business is with King Jesus and his throne. It is delightful to see the prophet rising beyond the narrow range of the Jew, getting out of nationalities, and praying, “O Lord, revive thy work.”
That is the one ship we care for in the storm, that one vessel in which Jesus Christ is riding at the helm, the Captain of salvation, and the Lord High Admiral of the seas. Let the nations mix in dire confusion as they will, God ruleth over all, and bringeth out his church in triumph from all the strife of earth. The one anxiety of our souls should be, the bloodstained banner of the cross; will it wave high? Will King Jesus get to himself the crown, for we have neither will nor wish beyond.
So, Christian men, if you have heard God’s voice in the great judgments that are abroad, let those judgments lead you to pray, “Lord, remember thy church - thy church - thy church in England, thy church in America, thy church in France, thy church in Germany, thy church anywhere, thy church everywhere. O God, look upon thine elect ones; let the separate ones, scattered through all nations, receive of thy benediction; as for all else, in providence, we leave it to thy will, for thou knowest what is best.”
From a sermon entitled "A Message From God To His Church And People," delivered December 16, 1866. Image by Satoru Kikuchi under Creative Commons License.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
“The everlasting Father.”-Isaiah 9:6.
Just as the idiom, “the father of wisdom,” implies that a man is pre-eminently wise, so the term, “Father of eternity,” implies that Jesus is preeminently eternal; that to him, beyond and above all others, eternity may be ascribed. No language can more forcibly convey to our minds the eternity of our Lord Jesus. Nay, without straining the language, I may say that not only is eternity ascribed to Christ, but he is here declared to be the parent of it. Imagination cannot grasp this, for eternity is a thing beyond us; yet if eternity should seem to be a thing which can have no parent., be it remembered that Jesus is so surely and essentially eternal, that he is here pictured as the source and Father of eternity. Jesus is not the child of eternity, but the Father of it.
Eternity did not bring him forth from its mighty bowels, but he brought forth eternity. Independent, self-sustained, uncreated, eternal existence is with Jesus our Lord and God.
From a sermon entitled "His Name - the Everlasting Father," delivered December 9, 1866. Image by Satoru Kikuchi under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
The plan of salvation by Jesus Christ is very clear and very plain: it is, “Trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” Often times our hearers say, “Oh it is so easy, so very simple-nothing to do but just to trust in Christ.” My dear hearer, if it be so simple, why not receive it?
“How they deserve the deepest hell
That slight these joys above!
What chains of vengeance must they feel
That break these bonds of love!”
If to trust in Christ be so simple, how can you refuse to believe in him?
Why will you live an unbeliever when God himself has said, “He that believeth not shall be damned.” Oh, fly from unbelief, which is the root that beareth gall and wormwood.
From a sermon entitled "The Root That Beareth Wormwood," delivered December 2, 1866. Image by Mikael Miettinen under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
He needed not to have died. If it had been his good pleasure he might have tarried gloriously amongst the songs of angels. He came not to earth to win a crown, because he had none, for all honor and glory are his by right. It was not to earn a dominion, or because he was not Lord of principalities and powers, that he descended from the skies: “Who though he was rich yet for our sakes he became poor, that we, through his poverty, might be made rich.”
From a sermon entitled "The Captive Savior Freeing His People," delivered Novermber 25, 1866. Image by Flemming Christiansen under Creative Commons License.
Monday, July 27, 2009
The colossal systems of idolatry which still dominate over the minds of men must yet come down; the truth as it is in Jesus must ere long prevail over those ancient dynasties of error, for Jesus our Lord must reign from the river even unto the ends of the earth. In these last times, when sin in all its forms and Satan with all his craft shall be subdued, then death itself also, the unconquerable death, the insatiable devourer of the human race, who has swept them away as grass before the mower’s scythe - then shall death who has feared the face of none, but has laid armies prostrate in his wrath, be utterly destroyed.
He who is immortality and life shall bring death of death and destruction to the grave, and unto him shall be songs of everlasting praise. Contemplate the glory of your Master, then, believer. From the base of the pyramid, deep in darkness, he rises to the summit, which is high in glory; from the depths of the abyss of woe he leaps to the tops of the mountain of joy. Anticipate his triumph by faith, for you shall partake in it; so surely as you share in his abasement, you shall also partake in his glory, and the more you shall become conformable unto him in his sufferings, the more may you rest assured that you shall be partakers with him in the glory which is to be revealed.
From a sermon entitled "The Last Enemy Destroyed," delivered November 18, 1866. Image by Calum Davidson under Creative Commons License.
Friday, July 17, 2009
We'll be taking a week off or so to enjoy the summer weather.
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Thursday, July 16, 2009
Four persons took each a corner of the bed and brought in a palsied man who could not come of himself, and they let him down with much inconvenience through the roof. God is blessing the church now. Christian men and women, join together to pray for your friends who cannot or will not pray for themselves; and if you meet with any in deep distress, palsied with despair, who cannot lift the finger of faith, strive to bring them to hear the gospel, bring them where Christ is working miracles. If one of you cannot prevail to lay the case before the Lord, let two of you unite; if two should not be enough, let four blend their petitions; if four should not suffice, tell it to the church, and ask the whole to pray; but do strive to bring dying sinners where Christ is working spiritual miracles.
From a sermon entitled "The Gospel's Healing Power," delivered November 11, 1866. Image by Carla Carvalho Tomás under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Praying in the Holy Ghost is praying in fervency. Cold prayers, my brethren, ask the Lord not to hear them. Those who do not plead with fervency, plead not at all. As well speak of lukewarm fire as of lukewarm prayer; it is essential that it be red-hot. Real prayer is burnt as with hot iron into a man’s soul, and then comes forth from the man’s soul like coals of juniper which have a most vehement heat. Such prayers none but the Holy Ghost can give. I have heard from this spot prayers which I never can forget, nor will you ever forget them either. Last January and February there were times when certain of our brethren were helped to pray with such power that we were bowed down in humiliation, and anon upborne as on the wings of eagles in the power of supplication.
There is a way of praying with power in which a man seems to get hold of the posts of heaven’s gate, as Samson grasped the pillars of the temple, and appears as though he would pull all down upon himself sooner than miss the blessing. It is a brave thing for the heart to vow, “I will not let thee go except thou bless me.” That is praying in the Holy Ghost. May we be tutored in the art
of offering effectual fervent prayer!
From a sermon entitled "Praying In The Holy Ghost," delivered November 4, 1866. Image by Alkuin under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Oh! beloved, if the battle of salvation were to be fought by man alone, then you and I might throw down sword and shield and despairingly give it all up, for why should we waste our exertions in fruitless toil? But when we understand that the Spirit of God has laid bare his holy arm to save us, and that he worketh in us to will and to do of his own good pleasure, we are not afraid of the worst moment in the fight, we are not dispirited concerning the blackest hour of the conflict.
No; let the enemy rush forward with concentrated and infuriated force; let the powers of darkness and of inward corruption advance with malignant might, there is One who is greater than them all, whose standard shall arrest their onslaught. Let the evil spirit do his uttermost, for then shall we see what the Holy Ghost can do when the fullness of his power is displayed. We cannot expect to see God at his best unless we see the devil at his worst; but when our plight becomes the most dolorous, then shall our help become the most glorious; and when the creature is ready to die of despair, then shall be an opportunity for the Creator’s irresistible arm to put forth its energy and to glorify itself in us.
From a sermon entitled "The Standard Uplifted In The Face of The Foe," delivered October 28, 1866. Image by Nick Russill under Creative Commons License.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Forget not to pray for the church of God that it may be knit together in one. Do not ask that it may be made uniform; that is neither desirable nor probable, but pray that all Christians may be one as the Father is one with the Son; that is, one in spirit; so that we, dividing as we always shall do as to our thoughts upon many points, may be one in the hope that animates us, in the spirit that actuates us, one in the life of God that pulsates in our souls. Pray that the churches may be knit together in holy love, and may strive together for nothing but for the advancement of the faith of Christ.
From a sermon entitled "Pray For Jesus," delivered October 21, 1866. Image by Chris under Creative Commons License.
Friday, July 10, 2009
I have often prayed to God that I might not be the pastor of an army of invalids. I would be glad enough to comfort them, and do my best to make this a hospital for them, but I want to be the captain of an army of soldiers, and to turn this place into a barracks for them. I want you to go out every day from Monday till Saturday, and on the Sabbath too, fighting for Christ, contending for the faith, seeking to gather in outcasts, looking after the poor and needy, helping the weak and feeble, comforting the disconsolate, and putting out all your strength in your Master’s cause. We have enough churches in London where they sleep. Oh! may God deliver us from having this place to be a huge cemetery, and make us to be a great house, a great city, from which shall go forth the hosts and armies of the Lord to do battle for him. May God send his Holy Spirit to abide amongst us in all his plenitude, and he shall have the glory.
From a sermon entitled "The Church Aroused," delivered October 7, 1866. Image by Kevin Walsh under Creative Commons License.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
I have argued out the case with my own heart, and I have concluded that if God becomes a Savior, there can be no case beyond his infinite power; if the Son of God dies and sheds his blood there can be no scarlet sin which his blood cannot wash out, and if he rose again and is gone up on high, then he is able to save unto the uttermost them that come unto God by him. I am resolved therefore to wait and wrestle until he deigneth to give me an answer.”
No man clings more closely to Christ than he who is most sensible of his lost estate. Who holds the plank the tightest? Why the man who is the most afraid of being drowned. Fear frequently intensifies faith. The more afraid I am of my sins the more firmly do I grasp my Savior. Fear is sometimes the mother of faith. One who was walking in the fields was surprised to find a trembling lark fly into his bosom. A strange thing for a timid bird to do, was it not? But there was a hawk after it, and therefore fear of the hawk made the bird bold enough to fly to man for shelter. And oh! when the fierce vultures of sin and hell are pursuing a poor sinner, he is driven by the courage of despair to fly into the heart of the blessed Jesus.
From a sermon entitled "Children's Bread Given To Dogs," delivered October 14, 1866. Image by Sabrina Campagna under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Before your conversion you used to hear moral essays, and to yield your assent to the excellence of virtue, but when temptation attacked you, what help could mere moral essays afford you? What strength to resist sin did you find in your belief in the excellence of virtue? Did you not resign yourself to the energy of evil as the snow melts in the fierce heat of the sun? But now since you have been converted, you are not kept from sin by fear but by love, and you are not impelled to holiness because you are afraid of hell, but because, being saved from the wrath to come and loved with an everlasting love, you cannot be so recreant [unfaithful] to your heart’s love and to every hallowed impulse of gratitude as to turn back to the beggarly elements from which you have been delivered. What the law could not do with its iron fetters, the gospel has done with its silken bonds.
From a sermon entitled "A Savior Such As You Need," delivered October 7, 1866. Image by Kenneth Baruch under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
There are many ways of being guilty of blood. Every man is guilty of it in one respect, namely, concerning the death of our Lord. I will not say that we are all guilty of his actual murder upon the tree, for we were not then born, yet as it was the common sin of mankind which rendered it needful that he should suffer, we cannot escape from a share in his death. This I can see very clearly, that those who reject, despise or neglect the claims of the Lord Jesus, and refuse to bow before him, do in effect mock him, scourge him, and put him to death. In speaking against his gospel, in deriding his servants, in neglecting his book, in denying his Deity, and in refusing to believe in him, men are virtually guilty of crucifying the Lord of glory; for they thus do that which proves that if they had been in a like condition with the Roman soldiery and with the Jewish priests, they would have nailed him to the cross.
We have committed actions tantamount to the crucifying of the Savior, and therein his blood cometh upon us to our condemnation, unless by faith it cometh upon us to our acceptance and forgiveness. Oh, sinner! be this for ever a subject of trembling to thee that thou hast necessarily something to do with the cross, that having heard of it, it shall be unto thee either a savor of death unto death, or of life unto life; either the blood of Jesus shall fall upon thy heart to cleanse thee from all guilt, or it shall fall upon thy head to condemn thee. Thou hast said, “I know him not, I will not obey him, I will not yield to him; I will as far as lieth in me put out his light and quench his dominion in the midst of mankind.” What is this but aiming at the very life of Christ, and being guilty of his blood?
From a sermon entitled "Soul Murder - Who Is Guilty?," delivered September 30, 1866. Image by under Creative Commons License.
Monday, July 6, 2009
“Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.”- Exodus 17:8.
If you look for friendship from a sinful world you are grievously mistaken. There is a deadly hereditary feud between the Christian and the powers of darkness. It sprang up in the garden, in the day when God said, “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, between thy seed and her seed,” and it continues still the same. You must fight if you would win the crown, and your pathway to the other side of Jordan must be the pathway of an armed crusader, who has to contend for every inch of the way if he is to win it. In proceeding with the narrative we notice that they found opposition from an unexpected quarter. Ignorance may have made them reckon upon the friendliness of Amalek, for they evidently journeyed at their ease without proper precaution, presuming upon the relationship and peaceableness of the dwellers in the land. It is just where we feel most safe that we should be most cautious. “A man’s foes are they of his own household.”
I do not think the Christian has so much to fear from open and avowed enemies as from those deceitful foes who feign to be his friends. Sin is never so much a Jezebel as when it paints its face with daubs of respectability and patches of innocence. Things dubious are more dangerous than things distinctly evil. The border land between right and wrong is thronged with thieves and robbers; beware of cut throats ye who journey there. Even right things may easily become wrong when they carry away our hearts, and therefore we must guard against their attractions. Many people need not be much afraid of being led into drunkenness and blasphemy, for we are not likely to give way to these grosser evils; but we have far more reason to watch against worldliness and pride, for these are enemies which select the godly as their special object of attack. Take heed to your virtues, Christian, for these, when exaggerated, become your vices; take care of the good things in which you boast, for they may furnish heat for the hatching of the vipers’ eggs of pride and self-satisfaction.
From a sermon entitled War With Amalek, delivered September 23, 1866. Image by Dean Souglass under Creative Commons License.
Friday, July 3, 2009
“Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.”- Exodus 17:8.
Young Christian, you have begun a life of warfare, rest assured of that. You would never be told to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ if it were not so. You must not put that sword up into its scabbard, but rather grind it sharp and hold it always ready in your hand. Watch constantly, and pray without ceasing; for, till you get your foot upon the golden pavement of the New Jerusalem, you must wear a warrior’s harness, and bear a warrior’s toils. Indeed, dear friends, there was that in the camp of the children of Israel which ought to have taught them to expect trouble, for was there not a voice heard among the murmuring host, “Is the Lord among us or not?” That croaking voice of unbelief foreboded ill. How could they expect to know peace when they doubted the God of peace. “There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked;” and in proportion as the righteous are at all like the wicked, in that proportion they lose peace. The cry of unbelief in your beam and mine, when it says, “Is the Lord among us or not?” ought to warn us that we are not yet in the land of rest, but shall have to fight with many an enemy before the banner may be furled.
Besides, Israel ought to have remembered that there was an ancient feud between the children of Esau and the children of Jacob, for had not Esau been supplanted by his brother? Amalek, Duke Amalek as he was called, was a descendant of Esau, and treasured up all his father’s hatred and enmity towards the house of Israel. Did Israel expect to journey near to Edom and not be attacked? And do you expect, Christian, that sin shall be round about you and not assault you?
From a sermon entitled War With Amalek, delivered September 23, 1866. Image by Dean Souglass under Creative Commons License.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
“This also cometh forth from the Lord of hosts, which is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working.”-Isaiah 28:29.
What a dream was that of Jacob when he saw the ladder the foot whereof rested upon the earth, and the top whereof reached up to the seventh heaven. That dream is more than realised when I see the foot of the ladder in the humanity of Christ, fixed in Bethlehem’s manger, or if you will at Calvary’s cross, and then behold the top of that ladder reaching up to the eternal throne, where he reigns as “God over all, blessed for ever,” who was also “the Son of Man.”
When I look at each of the rounds of that ladder, and see the proofs of Divine love in the Savior’s sighs and tears, and bloody sweat, and passion, and death, I am lost in wonder. Truly it is a matchless scheme by which justice has its due, and mercy has its sway, by which vengeance is satisfied, holiness is gratified, and yet love and mercy, uncontrolled and unlimited, sway their silver scepter among the sons of men. When I see this great sight those words of Isaiah’s ring with a bell-like music in my ears, “He is wonderful in counsel.” But, beloved, when you see redemption wrought out, and when you think that God really gave his only Son and that this Son actually did come to Bethlehem, really lived among the sons of men, bowed his neck to the yoke of obedience, and gave his hands to the nails, and his side to the spear, that his death was no fiction, but a grand reality, when you see that redemption completed by the resurrection of the Master, and bear the angelic shouts as he ascends on high, leading captivity captive, and see heaven lit up with a supernal splendor as he mounts to his well earned throne, you then find that he is as wonderful in the carrying out of redemption as he is in the proposing of it, that he is wonderful in counsel, and that he is also excellent in working.
From a sermon entitled "A Feast For Faith," delivered September 16, 1866. Image by DavetheGrey under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
The most fitting one in all the world will sit upon that throne. It will be God, but hearken, it will also be man. “He shall judge the world by this man, Christ Jesus, according to my gospel,” says the apostle. The judge must needs be God. Who but God were fit to judge so many, and to judge so exactly? The throne is too great for any but for him of whom it is written, “Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; a scepter of righteousness is thy scepter.” Christ Jesus, the Son of God, will judge, and he will judge as man as well as God; and how fitting it is that it should be so! As man he knows our infirmities, he understands our hearts, and we cannot object to this, that our Judge should be himself like unto us. Who better could judge righteous judgment than one who is “bone of our bone and flesh of our flesh”?
And then, there is this fitness about it; he is not only God and man, but he is the man, the man of men, of all men the most manly, the type and pattern of manhood. He will be the test in his own person, for if a man be like Christ, that man is right, but if a man be otherwise than Christ-like, that man deserves to be condemned. That wondrous Judge needs only look upon his own character to read the law, and to review his own actions to discern whether other men’s actions be right or wrong. The thoughts of many hearts were revealed by Christ on earth, and that same Christ shall make an open exhibition of men at the last great day. He shall judge them, he shall discern their spirits, he shall find out the joints and the marrow of their being; the thoughts and intents of the heart he shall lay bare.
From a sermon entitled "The Great White Throne," delivered August 12, 1866. Image by DavetheGray under Creative Commons License.