Friday, March 4, 2011

Let Us Not Sleep

“Let us not sleep, as do others.” — 1 Thessalonians 5:6

The Savior, as I see him throughout the whole of his ministry, appears to me on his knees pleading, and before his God agonising — laying out his life for the sons of men. But, brethren, do I speak harshly when I say that the disciples asleep are a fit emblem of our usual life? As compared or rather contrasted with our Master, I fear it is so.

Where is our zeal for God? Where is our compassion for men? Do we ever feel the weight of souls as we ought to feel it? Do are ever melt in the presence of the terrors of God which we know to be coming upon others? Have we realised the passing away of an immortal spirit to the judgment bar of God? Have we felt pangs and throes of sympathy when we have remembered that multitudes of our fellow creatures have received, as their eternal sentence, the words — "Depart ye cursed into everlasting fire in hell, prepared for the devil and his angels?" Why, if these thoughts really possessed us, we should scarce sleep; if they became as real to us as they were to him, we should wrestle with God for souls as he did, and become willing to lay down our lives, if by any means we might save some.

I see by the eye of faith, at this moment, Jesus pleading at the mercy-seat. “For Zion’s sake,” he saith, “I will not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest;” and yet, we around him lie asleep, without self-denying activity, and almost without prayer, missing opportunities, or, when opportunities for doing good have been seized, using them with but a slothful hand, and doing the work of the Lord, if not deceitfully, yet most sluggishly. Brethren, “let us not sleep, as do others.” If it be true that the Christian Church is to a great extent asleep, the more reason why we should be awake; and, if it be true, as I fear it is, that we have ourselves slumbered and slept, the more reason now that we should arise and trim our lamps, and go forth to meet the Bridegroom. Let us from this moment begin to serve our Master and his church more nearly after the example which he himself has set us in his consecrated life and blessed death. Let us not sleep then, as did the disciples at Gethsemane.

From a sermon by Charles Haddon Spurgeon entitled "Sleep Not." Image by Christian Revival Network under Creative Commons License.

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