Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Enjoy this wish from Spurgeon to you! We'll resume publishing in January. Feel like chatting with your fellow Spurgeon fans over the holidays? Visit us on our Facebook page.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
We have nearly arrived at the great merry-making season of the year. On Christmas day we shall find all the world in England enjoying themselves with all the good cheer which they can afford. Servants of God, you who have the largest share in the person of him who was born at Bethlehem, I invite you to the best of all Christmas fare - to nobler food than makes the table groan - bread from heaven, food for your spirit. Behold, how rich and how abundant are the provisions, which God has made for the high festival which he would have his servants keep, not now and then, but all the days of their lives!
From a sermon entitled "Good Cheer For Christmas," delivered December 20, 1868. Image by jenny downing under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
“Canst thou bind the sweet influences of Pleiades or loose the bands of Orion?”- Job 38:31.
Blessed be the Lord, we cannot have sunk so low but he can lift us up; we cannot be so barren and so comfortless but what he can make us fruitful and give us joy and peace again. There is no church, which he cannot revive. Are you members of congregations, which are slumbering? Do not despair. You will go home after the day’s service, and say, “I wish I could do some good here, but I am only one.” No, dear brother, you cannot loose the bands of Orion, but God can. The great Head of his church can suddenly come into his temple, and fill it with his glory. He can rake together the almost expiring ashes, and kindle the fire anew, and bring the sacrifice, and make your church yet to be a temple to his praise. Glorify the name of God, the all-powerful One: never let despair cross your soul.
While he lives who made heaven and earth; while he works who bears up the pillars of the universe; while he loves who once gave up his Son to redeem us, there can be no cause for trembling. Zion shall be comforted; her days of gladness shall dawn; her winter of sorrow shall flee away: God is on her side, and Orion relaxes his bonds.
From a sermon entitled "The Pleiades And Orion," delivered June 28, 1868. Image by s58y under Creative Commons License.
Monday, December 21, 2009
I do not know how you feel, but when I am permitted to give anything to him who opened his five wounds for me, who gave heart and soul, and all that he had for my redemption, I am full of delight. When I receive I fall flat on my face, but when I am permitted to give, a hand is laid upon me to lift me up, and I rise honourably accepted with my gift. You would all feel honored if you were permitted to present a gift to a queen, how much more to give to the King of kings! The cattle on a thousand hills are his: if he were hungry, he would not tell us; if he were thirsty, he would ask no drink from us; but yet in condescending love he comes to us, and his church comes to us, in forma pauperis,* and begs us to assist to support his work among men; and when we give cheerfully to Jesus, we are honored in the giving.
* - Latin phrase meaning "in the form of a pauper"
From a sermon entitled "The Widow Of Sarepta," delivered June 21, 1868. Image by P J Hansen under Creative Commons License.
Friday, December 18, 2009
"What shall we eat? What shall we drink? and wherewithal shall we be clothed?” Let a man attend to his business, and what other care need he have? Let the working man go about his toil, and give a fair day’s work for a fair day’s wage, and what has he to do with the world to come? Let the merchant meet his bills, and keep clear of the bankruptcy court, and what has he to fear as to the court of heaven? Why need he worry his head about dying and rising again from the dead? The mass of mankind, though they will put up with religion, and will even show some sort of interest in it, and some decent respect thereto, yet have no more sense of its reality or its power than the swine that feed at a trough.
Look at these dense masses thronging the thoroughfares of this huge city, and answer me: Are not the most of them like the stones in Jordan’s* bed, dead and lifeless as to spiritual things? What care they for heaven or hell? What care they about the precious blood of Jesus, or about the power of the Holy Spirit? It is a great deal more important question to them what horse won the Derby, or what turf speculator gained thereby, than to ask who is going down to hell,
or who has an interest in the precious blood of Christ.
* - That is, the River Jordan.
From a sermon entitled "The Wall Daubed With Untempered Mortar," delivered May 31, 1868. Image by Andrew Turner under Creative Commons License.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
There are some forms of spiritual life which are not absolutely essential, but prayer is of the very essence of spirituality. He that hath no prayer lacks the very breath of the life of God in the soul. I will not say that every man who prays is a Christian, but I will say that every man who prays sincerely is so; for, recollect, men may pray after a fashion, and even practice private prayer too, and yet may be deceiving themselves; for as the frogs of Egypt came up into the bedchambers, so doth hypocrisy intrude itself even into the private places where men pretend to worship God; but I do say that a cheerful constancy in sincere private devotion is such a mark of grace, that he who hath it may fairly conclude himself to be one of the Lord’s family.
From a sermon entitled "Daniel's Undaunted Courage," delivered June 14, 1868. Image by elbfoto under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
[L]et me notice that some Christians appear to try to live by experience. If they feel happy today, they say they are saved, but if they feel unhappy tomorrow, they conclude that they are lost. If they feel at one moment a deep and profound calm overspreading their spirits, then are they greatly elevated; but it the winds blow and the waves beat high, then they suppose that they are none of the Lord’s people.
Ah, miserable state of suspense! To live by feeling is a dying life; you know not where you are, nor what you are, if your feelings are to be the barometer of your spiritual condition. Beloved, a simple faith in Christ will enable you to remain calm even when your feelings are the reverse of happy, to remain confident when your emotions are far from ecstatic. If, indeed, we be saved
by Jesus Christ, then the foundation of our salvation does not lie within us, but in that crucified Man who now reigns in glory. When he changes, ah, then what changes must occur to us! But since he is the same yesterday, today, and forever, why need we be so soon removed from our
From a sermon entitled "Life By Faith," delivered June 7, 1868. Image by Joel Bedford under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
One of the first instincts of a forgiven sinner is to become a servant in the house of his pardoning God. Listen to David in the fifty-first Psalm: “Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.” Forgiven himself, he desires to be a preacher to others. But before we can serve God we must be anointed to the service. God will have no unanointed priest in his temple, but his Holy Spirit is the anointing which he bestows upon every one of the pardoned. Not to me as the preacher alone is this anointing given, though I desire to have it more and more for your sakes, but for every one of you is this unction appointed.
“Ye have an anointing from the Holy One;” your eyes are anointed with eye salve, that you may see and discern the mystery of fellowship with God. Your hands have been anointed that you may be laborers together with God, and you have been anointed in heart, in body, soul, and spirit, that your entire man, filled with the indwelling Deity, may be consecrated to noblest ends. I pray God to give his children to feel this anointing more and more. We believe in no priestcraft, no setting apart of any set of men who are to minister in holy things as substitutes for their brethren, but all ye who are saints are alike kings and priests unto God.
From a sermon entitled "The Privileged Man," delivered May 31, 1868. Image by Phillip Capper under Creative Commons License.
Monday, December 14, 2009
Others in our churches do something for Christ, and know that they are alive, but their whole spiritual system is relaxed. If they take up the hammer and work for God, they strike such feeble blows that the nails do not know it. If they take the spade in their hand to dig in the Master’s vineyard, the weeds laugh them to scorn. They are so exceedingly feeble, and generally so changeable, so fond of new work, and of running after this and that, that they are of little or no real service to the church.
But the strong man in Christ Jesus is one who, if he fights, dashes to pieces the helmet of his foe; and if he wields the sling and the stone, takes care that the stone shall be sent with force enough to go through Goliath’s skull. He is a man who, if he prays, makes the gates of heaven shake and the vaults of heaven to ring. He is a man who, when he pleads with sinners, pleads all over - hands and face, and every muscle revealing his earnestness.... He feels that if religion be worth anything it is worth everything, and he throws his whole being into it - body, soul, and spirit, ardently and to the utmost pitch of energy, being given up to the Master’s cause.
From a sermon entitled "Unto You, Young Men," delivered May 13, 1868. Image by Phillip Capper under Creative Commons License.
Friday, December 11, 2009
Jesus does not love his own with a little of his love, nor regard them with some small degree of affection, but he says, “As the Father hath loved me, even so have I loved you,” and the Father’s love to the Son is inconceivably great, since they are one in essence, ineffably one. The Father cannot but love the Son infinitely, neither doth the Son ever love his people less than with all his heart. It is an affection which no angelic mind could measure, inconceivable, unknown.
From a sermon entitled "The Faithfulness of Jesus," delivered May 10, 1868. Image by Andréia Bohner under Creative Commons License.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Eastern monarchs affected great seclusion, and were wont to surround themselves with impassable barriers of state. It was very difficult for even their most loyal subjects to approach them. You remember the case of Esther, who, though the monarch was her husband, yet went with her life in her hand when she ventured to present herself before the king Ahasuerus, for there was a commandment that none should come unto the king except they were called, at peril of their lives.
It is not so with the King of kings. His court is far more splendid; his person is far more worshipful; but you may draw near to him at all times without let or hindrance. He hath set no men-at-arms around his palace gate. The door of his house of mercy is set wide open. Over the lintel of his palace gate is written, “For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
From a sermon entitled "The Aproachableness of Jesus," delivered May 3, 1868. Image by Bert K under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
"In my day, bookmarks were made of ribbon."
A rare extra post to say thanks for your ongoing support, which is tremendous.
Today marks our 700th post, and we're pretty excited about that.
We've also been recognized by the popular Xmarks bookmarking service (formerly known as Foxmarks) as being one of the Top 100 sites on the Web categorized as "Protestant." This means a lot of you are bookmarking us, and for that we thank you.
Posted by Nick at 5:09 PM
I bear my testimony tonight that there is no joy to be found in all this world like that of sweet communion with Christ. I would barter all else there is of heaven for that. Indeed, that is heaven. As for the harps of gold, and the streets like unto clear glass, and the songs of seraphs, and the shouts of the redeemed, one could very well give all these up, counting them as a drop of a bucket, if we might for ever live in fellowship and communion with Jesus. When it is our great privilege to press close to our Lord, and to feel that he loves us, and that we love him, and to lean our head upon his bosom, then it is glory this side Jordan!
From a sermon entitled "Bringing The King Back," delivered April 19, 1868. Image by Sam Ilic Photography - STAGE88 under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
At the day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit was poured out; then the whole church was baptized with a sacred influence, and ever since then the Holy Spirit has never been withdrawn from the Christian church. “ I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.” We often unbelievingly pray for the Holy Spirit as if he were not still with us, as if he were not perpetually resident among the sons of men; but he is here, always here - always dwelling in the Christian church.
Now consider who the Holy Spirit is: he is the blessed God himself - one person of the glorious Trinity in unity, and he is therefore the possessor of infinite power. In the world of mind he can work according to his own will, and can convince men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He can soften the most obdurate, he can turn to kindness the most cruel, and lead into light the most darkened....
This is the church’s power; let her seek more of it, and, possessing it, let her rest assured that the purpose for which she has been raised up will be accomplished...
From a sermon entitled "Good News For Loyal Subjects," delivered April 19, 1868. Image by Sam Ilic Photography - STAGE88 under Creative Commons License.
Monday, December 7, 2009
We know not what God has in store. He is great at surprises: his best wine last amazes us all. When the devil is most secure upon his throne, then God springs a mine, and blows his empire into atoms. Just when the wise virgins and the foolish alike have allowed their lamps to burn low, then is the cry heard, “Behold, the bridegroom cometh!” and those virgins arise and trim their lamps. So will it be among us. I am hopeful that, in answer to earnest prayer, God will speedily send amongst us a general intensity of desire for the glory of Christ, accompanied by breaking of heart and weeping of eye, for the perishing heathen, and a solemn resolve that, in Jehovah’s strength we will spare no pains, and neglect no efforts, by which we may make the gospel known unto the ends of the earth.
From a sermon entitled "A Young Man's Vision," delivered Aptil 16, 1868. Image by under Creative Commons License.
Friday, December 4, 2009
The great object of the gospel of Christ is to create men anew in Christ Jesus. It aims at resurrection, and accomplishes it. The gospel did not come into this world merely to restrain the passions or educate the principles of men, but to infuse into them a new life which, as fallen men, they did not possess.
I saw yesterday what seemed to me a picture of those preachers whose sole end and aim is the moralizing of their hearers, but who have not learned the need of supernatural life. Not very far from the shore were a dozen or more boats at sea dragging for two dead bodies. They were using their lines and grappling irons, and what with hard rowing and industrious sailing, were doing their best most commendably to fish up the lost ones from the pitiless sea. I do not know if they were successful, but if so, what further could they do with them but decently to commit them to their mother earth? The process of education and everything else, apart from the Holy Spirit, is a dragging for dead men, to lay them out decently, side by side, in the order and decency of death, but nothing more can man do for man.
The gospel of Jesus Christ has a far other and higher task: it does not deny the value of the moralist’s efforts, or decry the results of education, but it asks what more can you do, and the response is, “Nothing.” There it bids the bearers of the bier stand away and make room for Jesus, at whose voice the dead arise. The preacher of the gospel cannot be satisfied with what is done in drawing men out of the sea of outward sin, he longs to see the lost life restored, he desires to have breathed into them a new and superior life to what they have possessed before.
From a sermon entitled "Resurrection With Christ," delivered April 12, 1868. Image by Jule_Berlin under Creative Commons License.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.” — Acts 3:19.
Peter... preached not merely the gospel of good news, but Christ, the person of Christ; Christ crucified — crucified by them, Christ risen, Christ glorified of his Father. Depend upon it, this is the very strength of the Christian ministry, when it is saturated with the name and person and glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. Take Christ away, and you ungospelise the gospel, you do but pour out husks such as swine do eat, while the precious kernel is removed, seeing you have taken away the person of the Lord Jesus Christ....
Peter would tell them about Jesus Christ, and about nothing else but Jesus Christ. He knew this to be the power of God unto salvation, and he would not flinch from it; so to them, even to them, he delivered the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, with a pungency as well as a simplicity scarcely to be rivalled. Notice how he puts it: “Ye” have slain him; “ye” have crucified him; “ye” have preferred a murderer. He is not afraid of being personal; he does not shirk the touching of men’s consciences; he rather thrusts his hand into their hearts and make them feel their sin; he labors to open a window into the darkness of their spirits, to let the light of the Holy Ghost shine into their soul.
Even thus, my brethren, when we preach the gospel, must we do: affectionately but graciously must we deal with men. Far hence be all trimming and mincing of matters. Accursed let him be that takes away from the gospel of Jesus Christ that he may win popular applause, or who bates his breath and smoothes his tongue that he may please the unholy throng. Such a man may have for a moment the approbation of fools, but, as the Lord his God liveth, he shall be set as a target for the arrows of vengeance in the day when the Lord cometh to judge the nations. Peter, then, boldly and earnestly preached the gospel — preached the Christ of the gospel — preached it personally and directly at the crowd who were gathered around him.
From a sermon entitled "Apostolic Exhortation," delivered April 5, 1868. Image by Michael King under Creative Commons License.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Some have lived for wealth, but when they have gained it, they have been disappointed with the result. Though they have heaped gold in the bag, and added house to house, and field to field, yet their aching spirit has craved still for food; for gold can no more feed a soul than dust can satisfy the hunger of the body. Some have followed the star of ambition; they would be famous, and make unto themselves a name like the great men that be in the earth, and when they have gained the bubble reputation, they have wept to find that, “vanity of vanities, all is vanity.” Even the best of earthly joys pall upon the appetites of those who attain to them.
Christian, stand thou to thy God. Be it thine to live for him that made thee, to live in him that bought thee, to live with him that chose thee, to live like him who lived and died for thee. Thou shalt find that such an object of life will satisfy all the powers and passions of thy soul, for to this end thy soul was formed and suited. Thou shalt run in this race without weariness, and walk without fainting, and if thou gettest the prize, it is one that shall not wither in thy hand like the ivy wreath of Greece, or like the laurel crown of Rome, decay upon thy brow; for thou shalt win a crown of life that fadeth not away.
From a sermon entitled "Israel's God and God's Israel," delivered March 29, 1868. Image by Vince Alongi under Creative Commons License.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
If there be divisions amongst you, and one shall say, “I am for this,” and another, “I am for that,” how can you expect that the Holy Spirit, who is the Spirit of peace, should be present with you, and working among you? But when we are knit together in brotherly affection, the Lord commandeth the blessing, even life for evermore. Where brotherly love continues, and saints walk in holy unity, the witness they bear is powerful, and the increase they gather is palpable....
I think all of us who know anything of the history of churches, especially those of a democratic order, where we recognize the rights of every member, understand how easy it is for thoughts to diverge, for counsels to vary, and for excellent brethren conscientiously to disagree. A breach once made has a tendency to widen, and a rent, unless speedily repaired, may tear a church to pieces.
From a sermon entitled "Good Earnests of Great Success," delivered January 12, 1868. Image by Vince Alongi under Creative Commons License.