Friday, April 30, 2010

Arise and to the Work!

Hear then, you who profess to be in Christ, you all love him, you have all a work to do, to all God will give the needed grace, and therefore I charge you by your fealty to your King, by your allegiance to your Lord, every one of you shake yourself from the dust of idleness, and resolve to go forth “to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty.”

Shall I say, brethren, that there is work for all of us to do which lies very close to hand? The preacher will never be without his. God will take care to furnish all his servants with sufficiency of work. You teachers; in the Sabbath-school, hold to your calling: it is a noble one; you are greatly honored in being permitted to take so distinguished a post of service as that of training young children for Christ. If you can do neither of these, and cannot speak for Christ at all, if you meet with any book, or tract, or sermon, that has been useful to your own soul, scatter it.... O you who love Jesus, attend to this. Put the truth in the way of him who knows it not. Lose no opportunity of so doing.

Talk for Christ personally, if you can, to individuals. Your Master sitting at the well talking to the Samaritan woman, was doing no small service to the truth. He preached to all Samaria through that woman. So may you preach to half a town through one individual. O that not one of us here may be idle! If you cannot do anything else, you can pray, and what strength the church of God gets from its praying men and women! Many bedridden saints are all the nearer to heaven in their weakness, and by their supplications they act like conductors to the skies, bringing down the divine lightning from God that shall rive and split the hearts of the ungodly. Oh, if you cannot do anything else, succor us by your intercessions.

I hope that there are no idlers in this church, but if there are, I charge them to cease from sloth. Better for you to occupy the meanest place of service than to be an idle Christian.

From a sermon entitled "A Summons To Battle," delivered October 10, 1869. Image by Christine and David Schmitt under Creative Commons License.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The One Who Holds the Keys

“I have the keys of hell and of death.” — Jesus Christ (Revelation 1:18)

Then hell and death, terrible powers as they are, are not left to riot without government. Death is a land of darkness, as darkness itself, without any order, yet a sovereign eye surveyeth it, and a master hand holdeth its key. Hell also is a horrible region, where powers of evil and of terror hold their high court and dread assembly; but hell trembles at the presence of the Lord, and there is a throne higher than the throne of evil.

Let us rejoice that nothing in heaven, or earth, or in places under the earth, is left to itself to engender anarchy. Everywhere, serene above the floods, the Lord sitteth King for ever and ever. No province of the universe is free from the divine rule. Things do not come by chance. Nowhere doth chance and chaos reign, nowhere is evil really and permanently enthroned. Rest assured that the Lord hath prepared his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom ruleth over all; for if the lowest hell and death own [acknowledge] his government, much more all things that are on this lower world.... he ruleth not only over all sheep and oxen, and all fowl of the air, and fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the sea, but death and Hades also are committed to the dominion of the glorified man. “At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

From a sermon entitled "Christ with the Keys of Death and Hell," delivered October 3, 1869. Image by Francesco Dore under Creative Commons License.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Having some roots in ourselves

Strong consolation is that which is not dependent upon the excitement of public services and Christian fellowship. We feel very happy on a Sunday here when we almost sing ourselves away to everlasting bliss, and when the sweet name of Jesus is like ointment poured forth, so that the virgins love it. But when you are in colder regions, how is it? Perhaps you are called to emigrate, or go into the country to a barren ministry where there is nothing to feed the soul. Ah, then, if you have not good ground for your soul to grow in, what will ye do? Those poor flowers which depend altogether upon being watered, how soon they fade if they are forgotten for a little while!

May we have root in ourselves and drink of the dew of heaven, and be like the “tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season, whose leaf also shall not wither.” This is to have strong consolation. Ministries are blessed, but oh! we must live on surer bread than ministries if we would have the highest form of life. We must use the means so long as God gives us the means, but we must have a spiritual life that could live even if means were denied us, in fact, a grace that would become the fountain of the means of grace to others if we were banished to any distant land. May we have such a consolation.

From a sermon entitled "Strong Consolation," delivered September 26, 1869. Image by tropicaLiving under Creative Commons License.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

This is message of the Gospel

This is the one message of the gospel, “Believe and live.” Trust in the Incarnate Savior, whom God appointed to stand in the stead of sinners. Trust in him, and you shall be saved. The whole gospel is condensed into one sentence as Christ left it before he ascended up on high, “He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved.” He who with his whole heart relies on Christ, and then avows his faith by being buried with Christ in baptism, such a one hath the promise that he shall be saved. But “He that believeth not” — that being a vital omission — “he that believeth not, shall be damned” — condemned, cast away for ever. Thy sole business then, sinner, is with this trusting thyself with Christ.

From a sermon entitled "A Serious Remonstrance." Image by nosha under Creative Commons License.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Deliverance through every trial!

We may expect between this place and heaven a fair share of trouble. If we write down for ourselves pleasant things, it may probably happen that we have written other than the book of the divine purpose. Many trials will befall us between this and the fair haven; but there is no killing one in them all, for the just shall live through them all by his faith.

We may also reckon upon many temptations. Satan, however old he may be, has not yet come to years of decay. Our old evil nature, too, though it may have lost some of its strength, yet is capable of wonderful outbursts of power, and the world outside of us is full of grief. We must expect to be tempted in many fresh ways between here and the celestial city; but there is no lulling temptation in them all, for the just shall live by his faith. Empty thy quiver, O enemy of souls, but this divine shield shall catch every arrow and quench its fire, and blunt those points, and save and deliver us from them all.

From a sermon entitled "The Vital Force." Image by Sam Ilić under Creative Commons License.

Friday, April 23, 2010

A strong word to those meeting with difficulties

Ye have not yet resisted unto blood striving against sin. What if you have been ridiculed? What if your best endeavors have been misrepresented? What is this compared with the sufferings of those who have gone before? Do you run with the footmen, and do they weary you? What would you have done if you had been destined to contend with horses? If these light afflictions, which are but for a moment, make you cry, “I will speak no more in the name of the Lord”? of what coward blood are you! How little worthy are you to be written in the same muster-roll with those who counted not their lives dear unto them...

If you try to be like the bellows to melt these hard hearts, and make them flow into the mould of Christ’s gospel, you must expect to be burned in the fire; and because you encounter a little persecution, or disrespect, or difficulty, do you flee to your chamber and cry, “I will give it up”? Shame upon you; rather redouble your efforts, and pray God to give you a greater blessing by way of success, or if not, greater patience to bear his will.

From a sermon entitled "The Bellows Burned," delivered September 12, 1869. Image by Sam Ilić under Creative Commons License.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Real Grace For A Real Need

O praise your God, this morning, you that are saved, for you had solemn need of saving. The longer I live the more I feel the need of daily salvation. I have need of my great Master’s healing hand every hour. If the Lord do not carry on the work which he has begun, it will surely fail. If he does not continue to repress and destroy in us our carnal inclinations, they will get the better of us even now. If the Holy Spirit does not fan with his living breath that spark of grace which lives within us, it will certainly be quenched with the waterfloods of temptation. If there were no other proof of our need of healing than our experience since conversion, we should have more than enough. If ever I get to heaven, I will praise God more loudly than any of you, for I shall owe more to the grace that will bring me there.

From a sermon entitled "Real Grace For Real Need," delivered September 5, 1869. Image by Michael Peligro under Creative Commons License.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Perils of Prosperity

Now, for a few minutes, I wish to address myself to believers in Christ who possess much of the goodness of God in providential matters. All the saints are not poor. Lazarus is a child of God on the dunghill, but Joseph of Arimathea is no less beloved, though he hath great riches. Many were converted to God from the poorest classes in the apostles’ days, but the Ethiopian eunuch, who had great possessions, was none the less a genuine disciple.

Now, there are some of you whom God has always prospered in your business, who have a healthy family growing up around you, while you enjoy excellent bodily health — indeed, you have the comforts of this life in profusion. I beseech you above others to fear the Lord for all this goodness. The tendency of prosperity is too often injurious; it is much harder to bear than adversity. As the fining pot to silver, and the furnace to gold, so is prosperity to a Christian man. Many a man will pass through trouble, and praise God under it, who, when he is tried with no trouble, will forget his God, decline in grace, and grow almost a worldling. Believe me, there is no trial so great as no trial, even as an old divine used to say that there was no devil so bad as no devil; there is no state in which a man is in such great danger as when he can see no danger.

From a sermon entitled "The Silken Fetter," delivered August 29, 1869. Image by Jennifer under Creative Commons License.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

God condescends

The Son of Mary was the Son of God, and he that suffered, he that bore our sicknesses, he upon whom our sins were laid, was no other than God over all. The Word which was God, and was in the beginning with God, was made flesh and tabernacled among us. Surely there was a door opened in heaven then, for if the Godhead comes into actual union with manhood, man and God are no more divided by bars and gates. It cannot be impossible that manhood should go up to God, seeing God has come down to man.

If God condescendeth thus, it must be with a motive and a reason, and there is hope for poor humanity; there are stars in the darkness of our fallen state. Immanuel, God with us, the Virgin’s child, the Son of the Highest, is he among us? Then a door is opened in heaven indeed. The angels knew this, for through the open door they came trooping forth with songs of joy and gladness, hailing the birth of the Prince of Peace; and doubtless the spirits of the just, as they peered through the opened lattice, were glad to behold the union of earth with heaven.

From a sermon entitled "A Door Opened In Heaven," delivered August 22, 1869. Image by Sergio R. Nuñez C. under Creative Commons License.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Our little anxieties

I would, with special earnestness, beg you to believe that God is in little things. It is the little troubles of life that annoy us the most. A man can put up with the loss of a dear friend sometimes better than he can with the burning of his fingers with a coal, or some little accident that may occur to him. The little stones in the sandal make the traveler limp; while great stones do him little hurt, for he soon leaps over them. Believe that God arranges the littles. Take the little troubles as they come; remember them to your God, because they come from God. Believe that nothing is little to God which concerns his people; to him, indeed, your greatest concerns may be said to be little; and your little anxieties are not too mean for his notice.

The very hairs of your head are all numbered; you may, therefore, pray to him about your smallest griefs. If not a sparrow lighteth upon the ground without your Father, you have reason to see that the smallest events in your career are arranged by him, and it should be your joy to accept them as they come, and not make them causes of offense, either to others or to yourselves. This is a truth on which you may rely implicitly, and exercise yourselves continually, until you lull the sharpest pains, calm the most feverish excitements, and obtain the sweetest repose that a spirit weary, but restless, can indulge in. It is the antidote of fear. I commend this positive certainty to you with the utmost confidence. Everything in the future is appointed by God. As men you will account it reasonable; as disciples you will believe it, for it is plainly revealed; and as Christians I trust you may rejoice in it heartily, for it must be a theme of rejoicing that all is in the hand of the great King. The Lord is King; let his people rejoice!

From a sermon entitled "A Safe Prospective," delivered July 8, 1869. Image by Bala under Creative Commons License.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Serving Him before we serve others

Much that is done religiously is not done unto God. A sermon may be preached, and contain excellent truth, and the language in which the truth is stated may be everything that could be desired, and yet the service rendered may be to the hearers, or to the man’s own self, and not to God at all. You may go to your Sabbath-school class, and with great perseverance you may instruct those little children, but yet you may have served your fellow teachers, or the general community, rather than have served your God.

To whom do you look for a reward? Whose smile is it that gladdens you? Whose frown would depress you? Whose honor do you seek in all that you are doing? For remember that which is uppermost in thy heart is thy master. If thy deepest motive be to seem to be active, to appear to be diligent and to win commendation for taking thy share in the church’s work, thou hast not served God, thou hast sacrificed unto others. O beloved, this is a point; which, though it be very simple to speak of, is very searching indeed if it be brought home to heart and conscience, for then much of that which glitters will be found not to be gold, and the glory of much apparently excellent serving will dissolve in smoke. The Lord must be the sole object of thy labor; the pursuit of his glory must, like a clear crystal stream, run through the whole of thy life, or thou art not yet his servant. Sinister motives and selfish aims are the death of true godliness; search and look, lest these betray thee unawares.

From a sermon entitled "Serving the Lord," delivered August 15, 1869. Image by Justin Donnelly under Creative Commons License.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

God who shows mercy

My dear friend, when we ask for pardon, reconciliation, salvation, we must remember to whom we speak, and who we are who ask the favor. Some appear to deal with God as if he were bound to give salvation; as if salvation indeed were the inevitable result of a round of performances, or the deserved reward of a certain amount of virtue. They refuse to see that salvation is a pure gift of God, not of works, not the result of merit, but of free favor only; not of man, neither by man, but of the Lord alone. Though the Lord has placed it on record in his word, in the plainest language, that “it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy,” yet the most of men in their hearts imagine that everlasting life is tied to duties and earned by service.

From a sermon entitled "Help For Seekers Of The Light," delivered August 8, 1869. Image by Sam Wilson under Creative Commons License.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Thought Life

If man were a mere animal, his joy and sorrow would depend entirely upon outward things. Let but the trough be full, and the swine are happy; let the pasture be abundant, and the sheep are content. In the sunshine every sparrow will be twittering on the trees; let the heavens weep, and every wing is drooping. In long drought, or severe frost, or pinching famine, the animal creation languishes and pines. You cannot, however, be sure of making a man happy by surrounding him with abundance, nor can you plunge a Christian man into wretchedness by any deprivations which you may cause him. Man’s greatest joy or sorrow must arise from inner springs. The mind itself is the lair of misery or the nest of happiness. Thoughts are the flowers from which we must distil the essential flavorings of life. Paul and Silas sing in the stocks because their minds are at ease, while Herod frets on his throne because conscience makes him a coward....

Happiness lies not in the outward, but in the inward; the fairest garden is that whose walks and arbors are in the secret of the soul; the richest and most mellow fruits are not plucked from the trees of the orchard, but are ripened within the spirit. Hence the importance of our guarding well our thoughts.

From a sermon entitled "Multitudinous Thoughts And Sacred Comforts," delivered August 1, 1869. Image by Roberto Ferrari under Creative Commons License.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Think more of His Cross

Think more of Jesus’ cross, spend more time in contemplation of his blessed person, of his death and of his rising again; drink in more of his life, and live more upon him. I pray you do this. The words may sound in your ears as very common, and such as you have heard ten thousand times before, but the sense is weighty and all-important. If I had but one sentence that I might utter to you believers, I think I should make it this: live nearer to Christ. All virtues flourish in the atmosphere of the cross, all vices die beneath the shade of the cross; but get away from your Master, and you will be undone.

From a sermon entitled "The Old Man Crucified," delivered April 11, 1869. Image by James Jordan under Creative Commons License.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Spring Break

Hello Spurgeon fans - we'll be taking a little break this week. Stay in the Word and enjoy Him!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Christ the Ark of Salvation

He is the ark of God provided against the day of judgment. We by faith believe him to be capable of saving us; we come and trust him, we risk our souls with him, believing that there is no risk; we venture on him confident that it is no venture; giving up every other hope or shadow of a hope, we trust in what Jesus did, is doing, and is in himself, and thus he becomes to us our ark, and we are in him.

From a sermon entitled "The Believer A New Creature," delivered July 18, 1869. Image by James Jordan under Creative Commons License.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Ask God for the Latter Rain!

In this degenerate time we are very much as Israel was in the days of the Judges, for there are raised up among us leaders who judge Israel, and are the terror of her foes. Oh, if the church had in her midst a race of heroes; if our missionary operations could be attended with the holy chivalry which marked the church in the early days; if we could have back apostles and martyrs, or even such as Carey and Judson, what wonders would be wrought!...

The fact is, the most of us are vastly inferior to the early Christians, who, as I take it, were persecuted because they were thoroughly Christians, and we are not persecuted because we hardly are Christians at all. They were so earnest in the propagation of the Redeemer’s kingdom, that they became the nuisance of the age in which they lived. They would not let errors alone. They had not conceived the opinion that they were to hold the truth, and leave other people to hold error without trying to intrude their opinions upon them, but they preached Christ Jesus right and left, and delivered their testimony against every sin. They denounced the idols, and cried out against superstition, until the world, fearful of being turned upside down, demanded of them, “Is that what you mean? Then we will burn you, lock you up in prison, and exterminate you.” To which the church replied, “We will accept the challenge, and will not depart from our resolve to conquer the world for Christ.” At last the fire in the Christian church burned out the persecution of an ungodly world.

But we are so gentle and quiet, we do not use strong language about other people’s opinions; but let men go to hell out of charity to them. We are not at all fanatical, and for all we do to disturb him, the old manslayer has a very comfortable time of it. We would not wish to save any sinner who does not particularly wish to be saved. If persons choose to attend our ministry, we shall be pleased to say a word to them in a mild way, but we do not speak with tears streaming down our cheeks, groaning and agonising with God for them; neither would we thrust our opinions upon them, though we know they are being lost for want of the knowledge of Christ crucified. May God send the latter rain to his church, to me, and to you, and may we begin to bestir ourselves, and seek after the highest form of earnestness for the kingdom of King Jesus. May the days come in which we shall no longer have to complain that we sow much and reap little, but may we receive a hundredfold reward, through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

From a sermon entitled "The Former And Latter Rain," delivered July 11, 1869. Image by James Jordan under Creative Commons License.