For more than a century, Charles Haddon Spurgeon's works have been consistently recognized, and their usefulness and impact have continued to the present day, even in the outdated English of the author's own day.
Why then should expositions already so successful and of such stature and proven usefulness require adaptation, revision, rewrite or even editing? The answer is obvious. To increase its usefulness to today's reader, the language in which it was originally written needs updating.
Though his writings have served other generations well, just as they came from the pen of the author in the nineteenth century, they still could be lost to present and future generations, simply because, to them, the language is neither readily nor fully understandable.
My goal, however, has not been to reduce the original writing
to the vernacular of our day. It is designed primarily for you who desire to
read and study comfortably and at ease in the language of our time. Obviously
archaic terminology and passages obscured by expressions not totally familiar in
our day have been revised. However, neither Spurgeon's meaning nor intent have
been tampered with. Some may take exception with any alteration of the
manuscript, however I am more concerned that the modern reader be able to
benefit from the work without being obstructed by unnecessary difficulties. No
substantive or doctrinal alterations have been made. I feel quite certain that
if Spurgeon were alive today, he would speak the language used today. -- Tony
All Scripture references are taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (C) 1978 by the New York Bible Society, used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.
#1 - #100
Charles Haddon Spurgeon
1 - Communion with God
"All my fountains are in you," said David. If you have all your fountains in God, your heart will be completely full. If you went to the foot of Calvary, there will your heart be bathed in love and gratitude. If you often go to your place of seclusion, and there talk with your God, it is there that your heart will be full of calm determination. If you go out with the Master to Mount Olivet, and looked down with Him on a wicked Jerusalem, and weep over it with Him, then will your heart be full of love for eternal souls. If you continually draw your stimulus, your life, the whole of your being from the Holy Spirit, without whom you can do nothing, and if you live in close communion with Christ, there will be no fear of you having a cold heart.
He who lives without prayer-he who lives with little prayer-he
who seldom reads the Word-he who seldom looks up to heaven for a fresh influence
from on high-he will be the man whose heart will become cold and barren; but he
who calls in secret to his God-who spends much time in holy seclusion-who
delights to meditate on the words of the Most High-whose soul is given up to
Christ-who delights in his fullness, rejoices in his all-sufficiency, prays for
his second coming, and delights in the thought of his glorious return-such a
man, I say, must have an overflowing heart; and as his heart is, so will be his
life. It will be a full life; it will be a life that will speak from the grave,
and reverberate into the future. "Above all else, guard your heart, for it
is the wellspring of life," and plead with the Holy Spirit to keep it full;
otherwise, the outcome of your life will be feeble, shallow, and superficial;
and you might as well not have lived at all.
2 - Loving Your Neighbor
I am certain you need no exhortation to love yourself, you will take care of your body, your comfort will be your primary concern. You would line your own nest with downy feathers if you could. You will do these things for yourself. Well, then, as much as you love yourself, love your neighbor.
3 - Power in the Heart
A man's power in the world, other things being equal, is just the ratio of the power and strength of his heart. A full-hearted is always a powerful man: if he is wrong, then he is powerful for deception; if error is in his heart, he is sure to make it notorious, even though it may be a downright lie. May a man never be so ignorant as to be powerful for wrong. However, if his heart is full of love for a good cause, he becomes a powerful man for that issue, because he has heart-power, heart force.
A man may be lacking a good education and training in the
proper manners of our society; but give him a good strong heart, that beats
hard, and there is no mistake about his power. Let him have a heart that filled
to the brim with an cause, and that man will do thing, or else he will die
gloriously defeated, and will glory in his defeat. HEART IS POWER.
4 - Shadows of Mercy
When the sunlight of God's mercy rises upon our needs, it casts the shadow of prayer far down upon the plain; or, to use another illustration, when God piles up a hill of mercies, He Himself shines behind them, and He casts on our spirits the shadow of prayer, so that we may rest certain, if we are in prayer, our prayers are the shadows of mercy.
5 - Omnipotence
Omnipotence may build a thousand worlds, and fill them with treasures; Omnipotence may crush mountains into dust, and cause all the seas to evaporate, and destroy the stars, but Omnipotence cannot do one unloving thing toward a believer. Oh! rest assured, Christian, a harsh act, an unloving action from God toward one of His own people is quite impossible. He is kind to you when he throws you into prison as when he takes you into a palace; He is as good when He sends famine into your house as when He fills your cupboards with plenty. The only question is, "Are you His child?" If so, He has rebuked you in affection, and there is love in His discipline.
6 - Wings of Prayer
Prayer is the rustling of the wings of the angels that are on their way bringing us the blessings of heaven. Have you heard prayer in your heart? You will see the angel in your house. When the chariots that bring us blessings do rumble, their wheels do sound with prayer. We hear the prayer in our own spirits, and that prayer becomes the sign of the coming blessings. Even as the clouds appear before the rain, so prayer precedes the blessing; even as the first green blade of a plant is the beginning of the harvest, so is prayer the prophecy of the blessing that is about to come.
7 - Reservoir of the Heart
You have seen the great reservoirs provided by our water companies, in which is kept the water which is to supply hundreds of streets and thousands of homes. Now, the heart is the reservoir of man, and our life is allowed to flow in its proper season. That life may flow through different pipes-the mouth, the hand, the eye; but still all the actions of the hand, the eyes, and the lips, derive their source from the great fountain and central reservoir, the heart; and therefore, there is no problem showing the great need that exists for keeping this reservoir, the heart, in a proper state and condition, since otherwise that which flows through the pipes must be foul and corrupt.
8 - God's Purpose for Us
There is not a spider hanging on the wall that doesn't have an errand; there is not a weed growing in the corner of the church lot that doesn't have a purpose; there is not a single insect fluttering in the breeze that does not accomplish some divine decree; and I will never believe that God created any man, especially any Christian man, to be a blank, and to be a nothing. He made you for an end. Find out what that purpose is; find out your niche, and fill it. Even if it be something small, if it is only to be someone who picks up trash at the side of the road, or one who mows the church lawn, do something in this great battle for God and truth.
9 - Undivided Purpose of Heart
Suppose you see a lake, and there are twenty or thirty streams running from it: why, there won't be one strong river in the whole area; there will be a number of little brooks which will be dried up in the summer, and will be temporary torrents in the winter. Every one of them will be useless for any great purpose, because there is not enough water in the lake to feed more than one great stream. Now a man's heart has only enough life in it to pursue on object fully. You must not give half of your love to Christ, and the other half to the world. No man can serve God and money, because there is not enough in the heart to serve the two.
10 - Pride
How easy it is for you and I to boast in ourselves! How hard it is to be humble! That demon of pride was born with us, and it will not die one hour before us. It is so woven into our very natures, and until we are dressed in our grave clothes and laying in the coffin, shall we ever hear the last of it.
11 - Trusting Works
Any man who trusts in his works, even to the smallest amount, is a lost soul. He who trusts in the smallest atom of his works, though it be so small that he himself cannot discern it, will be lost.
12 - Full Surrender
Don't keep back any part of the price received. Make a full surrender of every inclination of your heart; work to have but one purpose, and one aim. And for this purpose give God complete control of your heart. Cry out for more of the divine control of the Holy Spirit, so that as your soul is preserved and protected by Him, that it may be directed into one river, and one only, that your life may run deep and pure, and clear and peaceful; its only banks being God's will, its only river the love of Christ and a desire to please Him.
13 - Pride in the Saint
There never was a saint yet, that grew proud of his fine feathers, but what the Lord plucked them out one by one. There never yet was an angel that had pride in his heart, but he lost his wings, and fell into Hell, as Satan and those fallen angels did; and there shall never be a saint who indulges in self-conceit, pride, and self-confidence, but the Lord will spoil his glories, and trample his honors in the mud, and make him cry out, "Lord have mercy on me," the least of all saints, and the "very chief of sinners."
14 - Brains vs Pride
Men who have no brains are always great men; but those who think, must think their pride down, if God is with them in their thinking.
15 - Word of God
Never, never neglect the Word of God. The Word will make your heart rich with truth, rich with understanding, and then your conversation, when it flows from your mouth, will be like your heart, rich, soothing, and sweet. Make your heart full of rich, generous love, and then the stream that flows from your hand will be just as rich and generous as your heart. Above all, get Jesus to live in your heart, and then out of your heart shall flow rivers of living water, more rich, more satisfying than the water of the well of Sychar of which Jacob drank. Oh! go, Christian, to the great mine of riches, and cry to the Holy Spirit to make your heart rich unto salvation. So shall your life and conversations be a boon to your fellow man; and when they see you, your face will be like an angel of God. Wise men will stand up when they see you, and men will give you reverence.
16 - Man's Weakness
God has said it; men must serve Him-they must serve Him in His own way, and they must serve Him in His own strength too, or He will never accept their service. That which man does, unaided by divine strength, can never be accepted by God. There must be a consciousness of weakness before there can be any victory.
17 - Death
Life is nothing but death's hallway; and our pilgrimage on earth is but a journey to the grave. The pulse that preserves our being beats our death march, and the blood which circulates our life is floating it forward to the deeps of death. Today we see our friends in health, tomorrow we hear of their death. Only yesterday, we shook hands with the strong man, and today we close his eyes. We rode in a chariot of comfort only an hour ago, and in a few more hours the black hearse must carry us to the home of the living. Oh, how closely allied is death to life! The little lamb that plays in the field must s oon feel the knife. The cow that lows in the pasture is fattening itself for the slaughter. Trees only grow to be cut down. Yes, and greater things than these feel death. Empires rise and flourish; they flourish only to fall into decay, they rise to fall. How often do we take up a history book, and read of the rise and fall of empires. We hear of the coronation and the death of kings. Death is the black servant who rides behind the chariot of life. See life! and death is close behind it. Death reaches far throughout this world, and has stamped all terrestrial things with an arrow pointing to the grave. Stars die; it is said that large and destructive fires have been seen in outer space, and astronomers have marked the funerals of planets-the decay of those mighty spheres, that we had imagined set forever in sockets of silver, to glisten as the lamps of eternity.
But blessed be God, there is one place where death is not
life's brother-where life reigns alone; "to live" is not the first
syllable which is to be followed by the next, "to die." There is a
land where the death bells are never tolled, where grave clothes are never put
on, where graves are never dug. Blessed land beyond the skies! To reach it, we
18 - Nothingness of Man
My God! when I survey the boundless fields of space, and see those magnificent spheres rolling through it all-when I consider how vast are your dominions-so wide that an angel's wing might flap to all eternity and never reach a boundary-I marvel that you should look on insects so obscure as man. I have looked into my microscope and seen the short lived tiny insect on a leaf, and I have called him small. I will not call him "tiny" again: compared with me, he is great, if I put myself in comparison with God. I am so little, that I shrink into nothingness when I behold the almightiness of Jehovah-so little that the difference between the microscopic animal and man dwindles into nothing, when compared with the infinite chasm between God and man.
19 - Death of the Righteous
What a great sorrow that the good should die! That the righteous should fall! Death, why don't you cut down the poisonous tree? Why don't you mow down the poisonous plant? Why do you touch the tree that has provided shade for the weary people? Why do you touch the flower whose perfume has made the earth joyous? Death, why do you snatch away the excellent of the earth, in whom is all of our delight? If you would use your axe, use it on the trees that draw nourishment, but afford no fruit; then we would thank you. But why will you cut down the cedars, why will you fell the godly trees of Lebanon? O Death, why don't you spare the church? Why must the pulpit be hung in black; why must the missionary outpost be filled with weeping? Why must the godly family lose its priest, and the house its head? O Death, where are you? Don't touch the earth's holy things; your hands are not fit to pollute the Israel of God. Why do you put your hand on the hearts of the elect? Oh, stop, stop; spare the righteous, Death, and take the bad! But no, it must not be; death comes and smiles at the godliest of us all; the most generous, the most prayerful, the most holy, the most devoted must die. Weep, weep, weep, O church, for you have lost your martyrs; weep, O church, for you have lost your preachers, your holy men are fallen.
Howl fir tree, for the cedar has fallen, the godly fail, and the righteous are cut off. But stay awhile; I hear another voice. Say to the daughter of Judah, spare your weeping. Say to the Lord's flock, Cease, cease your sorrow; your martyrs are dead, but they are glorified; your ministers are gone, but they have ascended up to your Father and to their Father; your brethren are buried in the grave, but the archangel's trumpet shall awaken them, and their spirits are ever now with God.
20 - Satan the Defeated Enemy
Death was the devil's chief defense; Christ boldly opposed the lion in his den, and fought him in his own territory; and when He took death from him, and dismantled that once impregnable fortress, He took away from him, not only that, but every other advantage that he had over the saint. And now Satan is a conquered foe, not only in the hour of death, but in every other hour and in every other place. He is an enemy, both cruel and mighty; but he is a foe who shudders and shrinks back when a Christian gets into battle with him; for he knows that though the fight may waver for a little while in the scale, the balance of victory must fall on the side of the saint, because Christ by his death destroyed the devil's power.
21 - One Must Fear to Believe
See that man drowning over here-I also see another in the water too. The one in the distance thinks he can swim: a plank is thrown to him; he believes that he is in no danger of drowning. Well, he clutches the plank very leisurely, and does not seem to grab it firmly. But this poor creature over here, he knows he cannot swim, he feels that he will soon drown. Now, put the means of escape near him and note how desperately he clutches it; how he seems as if he would drive his fingers through the plank! He clutches it for life or death; that is his all, for he must perish if he is not saved by that. Now, in this case, he that fears the most believes the most; and I do think it is sometimes the same with poor hopeless and lost spirits.
22 - To Die is to Gain
Here we see through a glass that is dark and cloudy, but there we shall see face to face. There, what "eye has not seen nor ear heard" shall be fully revealed to us. There, paradoxes will be unraveled, mysteries made plain, obscure texts enlightened, confusing and questionable verses will be revealed as being amazingly simple and true. The least of all souls in heaven knows more of God than the greatest saint on the earth. The greatest saint on the earth may have it said of him, "Nevertheless he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he." Not our greatest preachers understand as much of theology as the lambs of the flock of glory. Not even the greatest masterminds of the earth understand one-millionth part of the mighty meanings which have been discovered by souls liberated from these bodies made from clay.
Yes, "To die is gain." Take away, take away that hearse, remove the covering of black, adorn it in white with bright shiny decorations. There, take away the music of the death march, rather lend me the trumpet and the drum. O hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah; why do we cry as the saints go to heaven? They are not dead, they have simply gone to heaven before us. Stop, stop that crying, hold back your tears, clap your hands, clap your hands.
"They are supremely blessed,
Are done with care and sin and woe,
And with their Saviour they rest."
What! weep! weep! for heads that are crowned with crowns of heaven? Weep, weep for hands that hold the harps of gold? What, weep for eyes that see the Redeemer? What, weep for hearts that are washed from sin, and are throbbing with eternal bliss? What, weep for men that are in the Savior's arms? No; weep for yourselves, that you are here. Weep that the mandate has not come which commands you to die. Weep that you must remain. But not for them.
I see them turning back on you with loving wonder, and they
exclaim, "Why do you weep? What, weep for poverty that is clothed in
riches? What, weep for sickness, that has inherited eternal health? What, weep
for shame, that is glorified; and weep for sinful mortality, that has become
immaculate? Oh, do not weep, but rejoice. If you knew what it was that I have
said to you, and where I have gone, you would rejoice with a joy that no man
should take from you."
23 - Satan's Attempts to Kill the Christ
When the Lord Jesus came down to earth, Satan knew his mission. He knew that the Lord Jesus was the Son of God, and when he saw Him an infant in the manger, he thought if he could kill Him and get Him in the bonds of death, what a fine thing it would be! So he stirred up the spirit of Herod to kill Him; but Herod missed his mark. And many a time did Satan strive to put the personal existence of Christ in danger, so that he might get Christ to die. Poor fool as he was, he did not know that when Christ died he would bruise the devil's head. Once, you remember, when Christ was in the synagogue, the devil stirred up the people, and made them angry; and he thought, "Oh! what a glorious thing it would be if I could kill this man; then there would be an end of Him, and I should reign supreme forever." So he got the people to take Him to the edge of the cliff, and he gloated over the thought that now surely He would be thrown down headfirst. But Christ escaped. He tried to starve Him, he tried to drown Him; He was in the desert without food, and He was on the sea in a storm; but there was no starving or drowning Him, and Satan no doubt panted for His blood, and longed that He should die. At last the day arrived; it was transmitted to the court of hell that at last Christ would die. They rung their bells with hellish elation and joy. "He will die now," said he; "Judas has taken the thirty pieces of silver. Let those Scribes and Pharisees get Him, they will no more let Him go than the spider will let go of a poor unfortunate fly. He is as good as dead."
And the devil laughed with excitement, when he saw the Savior stand before Pilate's bar. And when it was said, "Let Him be crucified," then his joy knew no limits, except the limit set by his own misery. As far as he could, he revelled in what was to him a delightful thought, that the Lord of glory was about to die. In death, as Christ was being observed by angels, so also He was seen by the devils too; and that dreary march from Pilate's palace to the cross, was one which devils watched with extraordinary interest. And when they saw Him on the cross, there stood the exulting fiend, smiling to himself. "Ah! I have the King of Glory now in my dominions; I have the power of death, and I have the power over the Lord Jesus."
He exerted that power, until the Lord Jesus had to cry out in bitter anguish, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" But ah! how short lived was hellish victory. How brief was the Satanic triumph! He died; and "It is finished!" shook the gates of hell. Down from the cross the conqueror leaped, pursued the fiend with thunderbolts of wrath; swift to the darkness of hell the fiend did fly, and swift descending went the conqueror after him; and we may conceive him exclaiming-"Traitor! this thunderbolt shall find and pierce you through, Though under hell's deepest, darkest wave you seek to go, To find a sheltering grave." And seize him He did-chained him to his chariot wheel; dragged him up the steeps of glory; angels shouting all the while, "He ascended on high, He led captives in his train and gave gifts to men." Now, devil, you said that you would overcome me, when I came to die. Satan, I defy you, and laugh you to scorn! My master overcame you, and I shall overcome you yet.
You say you will overcome the saint, do you? You could not
overcome the saint's Master, and you will not overcome him. You once thought you
had conquered Jesus: you were bitterly deceived. Ah! Satan, you may think you
shall overcome the little faith and the faint heart; but you are wondrously
mistaken-for we shall assuredly tread Satan under our feet shortly; and even in
our last extremity, with fearful odds against us, we shall be "more than
conquerors through Him that loved us."
24 - River of God
The river of God is full of water; but there is not one drop of it that comes from earthly springs. God will have no strength used in His own battles but the strength which He himself imparts; and I would not have you that are now distressed in the least discouraged by it. Your emptiness is but the preparation for your being filled; and your casting down is but the making ready for your lifting up.
25 - Kindness
Deal gently, deal kindly, deal lovingly, and there is not a wolf in human shape that won't be melted by kindness; and there is not a tiger in woman's form that won't break down and beg for forgiveness, if God should bless the love that is brought to bear on her by her friend.
26 - The Devil in Sheep's Clothing
If the devil comes to my door with his horns visible, I will never let him in; but if he comes with his hat on as a respectable gentleman, he is at once admitted. The metaphor may be very strange, but it is quite true, many a man has taken in an evil thing, because it has been varnished and glossed over, and not apparently an evil; and he has thought in his heart, there is not much harm in it; so he has let in the little thing, and it has been like the breaking forth of water-the first drop has brought after it a torrent. The beginning has been but the beginning of a fearful end.
27 - Few are Blessed
If we could see things as they are-if we were not deceived by the masquerade of this poor life-if we were not so easily taken in by the masks and dresses of those who act in this great drama, be it comedy or tragedy-if we could but see what the men are behind the scenes, penetrate their hearts, watch the inner motions, and discern their secret feelings, we should find but a few who could bear the name of "blessed."
28 - Destroy Sin
Do not touch the persons of men; but destroy their sin with a stout heart and with a strong arm. Kill both the little sins and the great ones; let nothing be spared that is against God and his truth; but we have no war with the persons of poor mistaken men.
29 - Prayer Before Blessings
If we had the blessings without asking for them, we would think them mere common things; but prayer makes the common pebbles of God's worldly provisions more precious than diamonds; and our spiritual prayer cuts the diamond, and makes it glisten more. After a long chase, the hunter prizes the animal, because he has set his heart upon it, and is determined to have it; and yet more true, after a long hunger, he who then eats finds his food much more tasty. So prayer does sweeten the mercy. Prayer teaches us its preciousness. It is the reading over of the bill of sale, the account, the property lists, before the estate and the properties are themselves transferred. We know the value of the purchase by reading over the will of it in prayer, and when we have groaned out our own expression of its matchless price, then it is that God bestows the benediction on us. Prayer goes before the blessing, because it shows us the value of it.
30 - Little Faith
We hear, sometimes, a great deal said about possessing a full assurance of being a child of God; and then, every now and then, we hear of a doubt, a hope. As good Joseph Irons used to say, "They keep hope, hope, hoping-hop, hop, hopping-all their lives, because they can't walk." Little faith is always lame.
31 - National Salvation
If there were such a thing as national salvation; if it could be possible that we could be saved in the whole and in the mass, that so, like the sheaves of corn, the few weeds that may grow with the stubble, would be gathered in for the sake of the wheat, then, indeed, it might not be so foolish for us to neglect our own personal interests; but if the sheep must, every one of them, pass under the hand of him that tells them, if every man must stand in his own person before God, to be tried for his own acts-by everything that is rational, by everything that conscience would dictate, and self-interest would command, let each of us look to our own selves, that we be not deceived, and that we find not ourselves, at last, miserably cast away.
32 - The Great Worker of Salvation
The great King, immortal, invisible, the Divine person, called the Holy Spirit: it is He that stimulates the soul, or else it would lie dead for ever; it is He that makes it tender, or else it would never feel; it is He that imparts power to the Word preached, or else it could never reach further than the ear; it is He who breaks the heart, it is He who makes it whole; He, from first to last, is the great worker of Salvation in us, just as Jesus Christ was the author of Salvation for us.
33 - God's Salvation for Sinners
As sure as God is God, if you this day are seeking Him correctly, through Christ, the day shall come when the kiss of full assurance shall be on your lip, when the arms of sovereign love shall embrace you, and you shall know it to be so. You may have despised Him, but you shall know Him yet to be your Father and your friend. You may have scoffed His name; you shall one day come to rejoice in it as better than pure gold. You may have broken His Sabbaths and despised His Word; the day is coming when the Sabbath shall be your delight, and His Word your treasure. Yes, marvel not; you may have plunged into the wretched house of sin and made your clothes black with sin; but you shall one day stand before His throne white as the angels are; and that tongue that once cursed Him shall yet sing His praise. If you are a real seeker, the hands that have been stained with lust shall one day grasp the harp of gold, and the head that has plotted against the Most
High shall yet be encircled with gold. Does it not seem a strange thing that God should do so much for sinners? But strange though it seem, it shall be strangely true.
34 - God's Word vs Man's
We do not care about 50,000 cliches, or syllogisms, or anything else. God's word against man's any day.
35 - The God Who Hears
Our God is no god who sits in one perpetual dream; nor does He clothe Himself in such thick darkness that He cannot see; He is not like Baal who does not hear. True, He may not be concerned about battles; He does not care for the pomp and pageantry of kings; He does not listen to the rise of martial music; He does not regard the triumph and the pride of man; but whenever there is a heart big with sorrow, wherever there is an eye filled with tears, wherever there is a lip quivering with agony, wherever there is a deep groan, or a sorrowful sigh, the ear of Jehovah is wide open; He marks it down in the registry of his memory; He puts our prayers, like rose leaves, between the pages of His book of remembrance, and when the volume is finally opened, there shall be a precious fragrance springing up from there.
36 - A New World Coming
God's good pleasure is, that this world shall one day be totally redeemed from sin; God's good pleasure is, that this poor planet, so long covered in darkness, shall soon shine out in brightness, like a new-born sun. Christ's death has done it. The stream that flowed from His side on Calvary shall cleanse the world from all its blackness. That hour of mid-day darkness was the rising of a new sun of righteousness, which shall never cease to shine upon the earth. Yes, the hour is coming, when guns and cannons shall be forgotten things, when the harness of war and the pageantry of pomp shall all be laid aside for the food of the worm or the contemplation of the curious. The hour approaches when old Rome shall shake upon Her seven hills, when Mohammed's crescent shall no longer increase on the earth, when all the gods of the heathens shall lose their thrones and be cast out to the moles and to the bats; and then, from the equator to the poles Christ shall be honored, the Lord paramount on earth, when from land to land, from the river even to the ends of the earth, one King, shall reign, one shout shall be heard, "Hallelujah, hallelujah, the Lord God Omnipotent reigns."
37 - Christ Our Food
Without bread, I become thin like a skeleton; and, at last, I die. Without thought, my mind becomes dwarfed, yes, and it deteriorates until I become the idiot, with a soul that just has life, but little more. And without Christ, my newborn spirit must become a vague, shadowy emptiness. It cannot live unless it feeds on that heavenly manna which came down from heaven. Now the Christian can say, "The life that I live is Christ;" because Christ is the food on which he feeds, and the sustenance of his newborn spirit.
38 - The Joy of a Newborn
Sinner, let this be your comfort, that God sees you when you begin to repent. He does not see you with His usual gaze, with which He looks on all men, but he sees you with an eye of intense interest. He has been looking on you in all your sin, and in all your sorrow, hoping that you would repent; and now He sees the first gleam of grace, and He beholds it with joy. Never a soldier on the lonely castle top saw the first gray light of morning with more joy than that with which God beholds the first desire in your heart. Never a physician rejoiced more when he saw the first heaving of the lungs in one that was supposed to be dead, than God
does rejoice over you, now that He sees the first symptom of good.
39 - Christian, Do Not Worry
I have seen the Christian man in the depths of poverty, when he lived from hand to mouth, and scarcely knew where he should find the next meal, still with his mind unruffled, calm, and quiet. If he had been as rich as an prince, he could not have had less care; if he had been told that his bread should always be delivered to his door, and the stream which ran fast by should never run dry-if he had been quite sure that ravens would bring him bread and meat in the morning, and again in the evening, he would not have been one, bit more calm.
40 - Our Friends in Heaven
Oh, I reckon on the day of death if it were for the mere hope of seeing the bright spirits that are now before the throne; to clasp the hand of Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, to look into the face of Paul the apostle, and clasp the hand of Peter; to sit in flowery fields with Moses and David, to bask in the sunlight of bliss with John and Magdalene. Oh, how blessed! The company of poor imperfect saints on earth is good; but how much better the society of the redeemed. Death is no loss to us by way of friends. We leave a few, a little band below, and say to them, "Fear not, little flock," and we ascend and meet the armies of the living God-the hosts of His redeemed. "To die is gain."
41 - Prayer
If anyone should ask me for a summation of the Christian religion, I would say, it is in that one word-"prayer." If I should be asked, "What will take in the whole of the Christian experience?" I would answer, "prayer." A man must have been convinced of sin before he could pray; he must have had some hope that there was mercy for him before he could pray. In fact, all the Christian virtues are locked up in that word, prayer. If you tell me, that you are a man of prayer, then I will reply at once, "Sir, I have no doubt of the reality, as well as the sincerity, of your religion."
42 - The Chosen
In the very beginning, when this great universe was in the mind of God, like unborn forests in a cup of acorns; long before the echoes walked in the quiet solitudes; before the mountains were brought forth; and long before the light flashed through the sky, God loved His chosen men and women. Before there were men and women-when the heavens were not yet fanned by an angel's wing; when space itself did not an exist; when there was nothing but God alone; even then, in that loneliness of Deity, and in that deep quiet and depth, His heart moved for His chosen ones. Their names were written on His heart, and they became dear to His soul.
43 - The Elect of the Elect
There are elect out of the elect, I will acknowledge, as to gifts and standing, and as to the works they may accomplish in this world; but there is no election out of the elect on the basis of a deeper extent of the love of God. They are all loved the same; they are all written in the same book of eternal love and life.
44 - The Rich Church
When I hear of a church where they all are the wealthy and the upper class of our society, then I always say farewell to them, for where there are no poor people, the ship will soon sink. If there are no poor, then, Christ will soon give them some, if they are a real Gospel church.
45 - Our Tears
Oh! it is a glorious fact, that prayers are noticed in heaven. The poor broken hearted sinner, going into his bedroom, bends his knee, but can only utter his mournful cry in the language of sighs and tears. Look! that groan has made all the harps of heaven thrill with music; that tear has, been caught by God, and put into a vase made especially for tears, to be perpetually preserved. The tearful praying Christian, whose distress prevent his words, will be clearly understood by the Most High.
46 - Slow Moving Christians
You crippled! I don't fear; you will not be thrown out. Two snails entered the ark; how they got there, I cannot tell. It must have taken them a long time. They must have started rather early, unless it is that Noah took them part of the way. So, some of you are snails; you are on the right road, but it will take a long while, unless some blessed Noah helps you into the ark.
47 - God Knows His Children
Jesus recognizes His family when their sins make them as black as the tents of Kedar, and He knows they shall be as bright as the curtains of Solomon. He knows His children when they do not know themselves; when they believe they are lost beyond recovery, or when they foolishly conceive that they can save themselves.
48 - Living in the Light of God
Give me the support of God, and I can easily bear the insults of men. Let me lay my head on the chest of Jesus, and I will not fear the interruptions of care and trouble. If my God will forever give me the light of His smile, and a glimpse of His blessing-it is enough. Come on enemies, persecutors, demons, yes, the Devil himself, for "the Lord God is my sun and shield." Gather, you clouds, and surround me, I carry a Sun within me; blow, wind of the frozen north, I have a fire of living coal within me; yes, death, kill me, but I have another life-a life in the light of God's countenance.
49 - Backsliders
Backsliders! fallen ones! God will have mercy on you if you are repentant. Glorious fact! the sorrowing backslider shall not be left behind. Backsliders shall sing above, as God's restored children, He has forever loved. Blind and crippled ones! believe in the Lord, and you shall be found among the children of the Lamb at last.
50 - God's Throne
You may erect little thrones for those whom you love; but God's throne must be the glorious high throne; you may set your loved ones upon the steps leading up to His throne, but God must sit on the very seat itself. He is to be enthroned, the royal One within your heart, the king of your affections.
51 - Love Not the World
Hate the world, value its treasure at a cheap price, estimate its gems as nothing but fakes, and its strength as nothing but dreams. Do not think that you will lose any pleasure, but rather remember the saying of that early Church leader Chrysostom, "Despise riches, and you will be rich; despise glory, and you will be glorious; despise injuries, and you will be a conqueror; despise rest, and you will gain rest; despise the earth, and you will gain heaven!"
52 - True Beauty
I gaze on beauty, and may myself be deformed. I admire the light, and may yet dwell in darkness, but if the light of the face of God rests upon me, I shall become like Him. The characteristics of His appearance will be on me, and the great outline of His attributes will be mine. Oh, wondrous mirror, which renders the beholder lovely! Oh, admirable mirror, which does not reflect self with its imperfections, but gives a perfect image to those that are unattractive.
53 - Our Works
You cannot get to heaven by your works. You might as well seek to reach the stars on a treadmill, as to go to heaven by works; for as you take one step, you will always be where you were before. If you cannot be perfect, God will not save you by works.
54 - God's Sovereignty
The worm is not to complain, because God did not make it an angel, and the fish that swims the sea must not complain because it has no wings to fly into the highest heavens. God had a right to make his creatures just what He pleased, and though men may dispute His right, He will hold and keep it intact against all comers. He protects His right and makes proud men acknowledge it, in all His gifts He continually reminds us of His sovereignty.
55 - The God of the Present
Don't you know that God is an eternal self-existent Being; that to say He loves now, is, in fact, to say He always did love, since with God there is no past, and can be no future. What we call past, present, and future, He wraps up in one eternal now. And if you say He loves you now, you say He loved you yesterday; He loved you in eternity past; and He will love you forever; for now with God is past, present, and future.
56 - Man's Strength
They that go off to fight, boasting that they can do it, shall return with their banners trailed in the dust and with their armor stained with defeat; for God will not go with the man who goes in his own strength.
57 - Think of God
Let your mind stroll upon the great doctrines of the Godhead: consider the existence of God from before the foundations of the world; behold Him who is, and was, and is to come, the Almighty; let your soul comprehend as much as it can of the Infinite, and grasp as much as possible of the Eternal, and I am sure, if you have minds at all, they will shrink with awe. The elevated archangel bows himself before his Master's throne; and we shall cast ourselves into the lowest dust when we feel what lowly nothings, what insignificant specks we are when compared with our all-adorable Creator.
58 - God's Gifts
Faith is the gift of God. Does my earthly, natural father love me because he fed me, and because he clothed me? No, he clothed and fed me because he loved me, but his love was prior to his gift. His gifts did not draw his love to me, because he loved me before he gave them. And if any man says, "God loves me because I can do this or that for him," he talks nonsense.
59 - Peace and Joy
Peace is the flowing of the brook, but joy is the rushing of the waterfall when the brook is filled and bursts its banks, and gushes down upon the rocks.
60 - The Lasting Works of Man
Many men have said of their works, "They shall last forever;" but how they have been disappointed! In the age following the flood, they made the bricks and built old Babel's tower, and they thought, "This will last forever." But God confounded their language; they never finished it. By His sovereignty he scattered the men and left the tower a monument to their folly. Old Pharaoh and the Egyptian monarchs built their pyramids, and they said, "They shall stand forever," and so indeed they still do stand; but the time is approaching when age shall devour even these. So it is with all the proudest works of man, whether they have been his temples or his kingdoms, he has written "everlasting" on them; but God has ordained their end, and they have passed away. The most stable things have vanished like shadows and bubbles of the moment, speedily destroyed at God's bidding. Where is Nina, and where is Babylon? Where are the cities of Persia? Where are the high places of Edom? Where are Mob, and the princes of Gammon? Where are the temples of the heroes of Greece? Where are the vast armies of the Roman Emperors? Have they not all passed away? And though in their pride they said, "This kingdom is an everlasting one; this queen of the seven hills (Rome) shall be called the eternal city," its pride is dimmed; and she who sat alone, and said, "I will not be a widow, but a queen forever," she has fallen, has fallen, and in a little while she shall sink like a millstone in the flood, her name being a curse and a byword, and her site the habitation of wild animals.
Man calls his works eternal-God calls them transitory; man conceives that they are built of rock-God says, "No sand, or worse than that-they are built of air." Man says he erects them for eternity-God blows on them for a second, and where are they? Like the fragments of a vision, they are passed and gone forever.
61 - God's Spirit and Man's Spirit
God's Holy Spirit and man's sin cannot live together peacefully; they may both be in the same heart, but they cannot both reign there, nor can they both be quiet there; for "the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature;" they cannot rest, instead there will be a perpetual warring in the soul, so that the Christian will have to cry, "What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?" But in due time: the Spirit will drive out all sin, and will present us blameless before the throne of his Majesty with exceeding great joy.
62 - Heresy
The boasted power of man's reason has not changed in the last one hundred and fifty years! It has piled up one thing, and then on another day it has laughed at its own handiwork, demolished its own castle, and constructed another, and the next day a third. It has a thousand dresses. Once it came out dressed like a fool with its bells, heralded by Voltaire; then it came out a bragging bully, like Tom Paine; then it changed its course, and assumed another shape, until finally, we have it in the base, bestial secularism of the present day, which looks only at the earth, keeps its nose upon the ground, and like the beast, thinks this world is enough; or looks for another world by seeking this one. Why, before one hair on his head shall turn gray, the last secularist shall have passed away; before many of us are fifty years of age, a new heresy shall come. They will have altered their name, assumed a fresh shape, put on a new form of evil, but still their nature will be the same; opposing Christ, and endeavoring to blaspheme His truths. On all their systems of religion, or non-religion-for that is a system too-it may be written "Transient; fading as the flower, fleeting as the meteor, frail and unreal as a vapor." But of Christ's religion, it shall be said, "His name shall endure forever."
63 - Worldly Flavors
You know, when we have been taking some kind of medicine, and our mouth has been impregnated with a strong flavor, whatever we eat acquires that taste. You have got your mouth out of taste by taking in some of the world's delicacies; you have some of the powder of the pastries of Sodom hanging on your lips, that spoils the glorious flavor of your meditation on Jesus. In fact, it prevents you from meditating on Christ at all. It is only a hearing of the meditation with your ear; not a receiving of it with your hearts.
64 - Warning of Judgment
Warn the boater before he enters the current, and then, if he is swept down the rapids, he destroys himself. Warn the man before he drinks the cup of poison, tell him it is deadly: and then, if he drinks it, his death lies at his own door. And so, let us warn you before you depart this life; let us preach to you while as yet your bones are full of marrow, and the sinews of your joints are still fastened.
65 - The Man Without the Spirit
Friend, you don't have the Spirit. You are nothing better-whatever you are, or whatever you may be-than the fall of Adam left you. That is to say, you are a fallen creature, having only capacities to live here in sin, and to live forever in torment; but you don't have the capacity to live in heaven at all, for you have no Spirit; and therefore you are unable to know or enjoy spiritual things. And mark this, a man may be in this state, and be a carnal man, and yet he may have all the virtues that could grace a Christian; but with all these, if he doesn't have the Spirit, he has not advanced an inch further than where Adam's fall left him-that is, condemned and under the curse. Yes, and he may practice religion with all his might-he may share in the Lord's Supper and be baptized, and may be the most devout person in church; but if he does not have the Spirit he has not moved a solitary inch from where he was, for he is still in "the bonds of sin," a lost soul. Further, he may pick up religious phrases until he talks very fast about religion; he may read biographies until he seems to be a deeply taught child of God; he may be able to write an article upon the deep experience of a believer; but if this experience is not his own, if he has not received it by the Spirit of the living God, he is still nothing more than a carnal man, and heaven is to him a place to which there is no entrance.
Further, he might go so far as to become a minister of the gospel, and a successful minister too, and God may bless the word that he preaches to the salvation of sinners, but unless he has received the Spirit, be he as eloquent as Apollos, and as earnest as Paul, he is nothing more than a mere man, without a capacity for spiritual things.
No, to top it all, he might even have the power of working miracles, as Judas had-he might even be received into the Church as a believer, as was Simon Magus, and after all that, though he had cast out devils, though he had healed the sick, though he had worked miracles, he might have the gates of heaven shut in his face, if he had not received the Spirit. For this is the most important thing, without which all others are in vain-the receiving of the Spirit of the living God.
66 - Alone with Christ
Some persons say they cannot bear to spend one hour in quiet solitude; they have nothing to do, nothing to think about. No Christian will ever talk like that, surely; for if I can but give him one word to think of-Christ-let him spell that over forever; let me give him the word Jesus, and only let him try to think it over, and he shall find that an hour is not enough, and that eternity is not half enough time to utter our glorious Savior's praise.
67 - Showers of Blessings
When God sends rain upon the church, He "sends showers of blessings." There are some ministers who think, that if there is a shower on their church, God will send a shower of work. Yes, but if He does, He will send a shower of comfort. Others think that God will send a shower of gospel truth. Yes, but if He sends that, He will send a shower of gospel holiness. For all God's blessings go together. They are like the sweet sister graces that danced hand in hand. God sends showers of blessings. If He gives comforting grace, He will also give converting grace; if He makes the trumpet of judgment blow for the bankrupt sinner, He will also make it sound a shout of joy for the sinner that is pardoned and forgiven. He will send "showers of blessings"
68 - The Outpouring of the Spirit
The hour is coming, and it may even be now, when the Holy Spirit shall be poured out again in such a wonderful manner, that many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased-the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the surface of the great deep; when His kingdom shall come, and His will shall be done on earth even as it is in heaven. We are not going to be dragging on forever like Pharaoh, with the wheels off his chariot. My heart exults, and my eyes flash with the thought that very likely I shall live to see the out-pouring of the Spirit; when "the sons and the daughters of God again shall prophesy, and the young men shall see visions, and the old men shall dream dreams." Perhaps there shall be no miraculous gifts for they will not be required; but yet there shall be such a miraculous amount of holiness, such an extraordinary fervor of prayer, such a real communion with God, and so much vital religion, and such a spread of the doctrines of the cross, that every one will see that truly the Spirit is poured out like water, and the rains are descending from above. For that let us pray; let us continually work for it, and seek it of God.
69 - Controlling Evil Thoughts
My thoughts will sometimes fly up to God with such a power that eagles' wings cannot match it. It sometimes has such might that it can almost see the King in His beauty, and the land which is very far off. With regard to myself, my thoughts will sometimes; take me over the gates of iron, across that infinite unknown, to the very gates of pearl, and discovers the glorified Blessed One. But, if it is powerful one way, it is another: for my thoughts have taken me down to the vilest gutters and sewers of the earth. It has given me imaginations so dreadful, that, while I could not avoid them, yet I was thoroughly horrified at them. These thoughts will come; and when I feel in the holiest condition, the most devoted to God, and the most earnest in prayer, it often happens that that is the very time when the plague breaks out the worst. But I rejoice and think of one thing, that I can cry out when these thoughts come upon me. I know it is said in the Book of Leviticus, when someone committed an immoral act of evil against a virgin, if the maiden cried out for someone to help her, then her life was to be spared. So it is with the Christian. If he cries out when evil thoughts come, there is hope. Can you chain your thoughts? No; but the power of the Holy Spirit can. Yes, He shall do it! and He does it even on the earth.
70 - The Call of Salvation
Once I, like Mazeppa, tied to the wild horse of my lust, tied hand and foot, incapable of resistance, was galloping on with hell's wolves behind me, howling for my body and my soul, as their just and lawful prey. There came a mighty hand which stopped that wild horse, cut my ropes, set me down, and gave me freedom. Is there power? Yes, there is power; and he who has felt it, must acknowledge it. There was a time when I lived in the strong old castle of my sins, and rested on my works. There came a trumpeter to the door, and begged me to open it. I with anger chased him from the porch, and said he would never enter. There came a glorious person, with loving countenance; His hands were marked with scars, where nails were driven, and His feet had nail prints too; He lifted up His cross, using it as a hammer; at the first blow the gate of my prejudice shook; at the second it trembled more, at the third down it fell, and in He came; and He said, "Get up, and stand on your feet, for I have loved you with an everlasting love."
71 - Holy Like God
Just before I die sanctification will be finished; but not until that moment shall I ever claim perfection in myself. But at that moment when I depart, my spirit shall have its last baptism in the Holy Spirit's fire. It shall be put in the crucible for its last trying in the furnace; and then, free from all dross, and fine, like a wedge of pure gold, it shall be presented at the feet of God without the least degree of dross or mixture. O glorious hour! O blessed moment! I think I would still long to die if there were no heaven, if I might but have that last purification, and come up from Jordan's stream pure white from the washing. Oh, to be washed white, clean, pure, perfect! Not an angel more pure than I shall be-yes, not God himself more holy! And I shall be able to say, in a double sense, "Great God, I am clean, through Jesus' blood I am clean, through the Spirit's work I am clean too!"
72 - God's Army Comes Alive
If this earth could have its coat torn away for a little while, if the green sod could be cut from it, and we could look about six feet deep into its bowels, what a world it would seem! What should we see? Bones, carcasses, rottenness, worms, corruption. And you would say, Can these dry bones live? Can they start up? Yes! "in a moment! in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet sound, the dead shall be raised." He speaks; they are alive! See them scattered! bone comes to his bone! See them naked; flesh comes upon them! See them still lifeless; "Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain!" When the wind of the Holy Spirit comes, they live; and they stand upon their feet an exceeding great army.
73 - The Same Yesterday and Today
Theology has nothing new in it except that which is false. The preaching of Paul must be the preaching of the minister today. There is no improvement here. We may advance in our knowledge of it; but it stands the same, for this good reason, that it is perfect, and perfection cannot be any better.
74 - The Resurrection of Christ
The resurrection of Christ was effected by the means of the Spirit! and here we have a vivid illustration of His omnipotence. Could you have stepped, as angels did, into the grave of Jesus, and seen His sleeping body, you would have found it cold as any other corpse. Lift up the hand; it falls by the side. Look at the eye; it is glazed. And there is a death-thrust in His side which must have annihilated His life. See His hands: the blood no longer drips from them. They are cold and motionless.
Can that body live? Can it start up? Yes; and be an illustration of the might of the Spirit. For when the power of the Spirit came on Him, as it was when it fell upon the dry bones of the valley, "He arose in the majesty of His divinity, and, bright and shining, astonished the watchmen so that they ran away; yes, He arose no more to die, but to live forever, King of kings and Prince of the kings of the earth."
75 - The God of the Christians
God is love in its highest degree. He is love rendered more than love. Love is not God, but God is love; He is full of grace, He is the abundant source of mercy-He delights in mercy. As high as the heavens are above the earth, so high are His thoughts of love above our thoughts of despair; and His ways of grace above our ways of fear. This God, in whom these three great attributes harmonize-unlimited sovereignty, inflexible justice, and unfathomable grace-these three make up the main attributes of the one God of heaven and earth whom the Christians worship.
76 - Meditate on Christ
I urge you to meditate on Christ, as a piece of scented substance that was perfumed in heaven. It does not matter what you have in your house; this shall make it like the fragrance like Paradise-shall make it smell like those breezes that once blew through Eden's garden, carrying the odor of flowers. Ah! there is nothing that can so console your spirits, and relieve all your distresses and troubles, as the feeling that now you can meditate on the person of Jesus Christ.
77 - Communicating with Jesus
I think that if you had a free pass to heaven's palace, you would use it often; if you could go there and hold communion with some person whom you dearly loved, you would often be found there. But here is your Jesus, the king of heaven, and He gives you that which can open the gates of heaven and let you in to hold company with Him, and yet you live without meditating upon His work, meditating upon His person, meditating upon His offices, and meditating upon His glory.
78 - What We Do With Our Lives
Just as the tiny pieces of dirt and rock make up the mountains and the mountains together make up the mountain range, so the trivial actions of our lives make up the whole life and each of these must be pulled apart separately. You had an hour to spare the other day-what did you do? You had a voice-how did you use it? You had a pen-you could use that-what did you write? Each particular shall be brought out, and there shall be demanded an account for each one.
79 - Wandering Sheep
It is good to be the sheep of God's pasture, even if we have been wandering sheep. The straying sheep has an owner, and however far it may stray from the fold, it never ceases to belong to that owner. I believe that God will yet bring back into the fold every one of His own sheep, and they shall all be saved. It is something to be aware of our wanderings, for if we feel ourselves to be lost, we shall certainly be saved; if we feel ourselves to have wandered, we shall certainly be brought back.
80 - Worthless Virtue
Virtues in unsaved men are nothing but whitewashed sins. The best performance of an unchanged character is worthless in God's sight. It wants the stamp of grace on it; and that which has not the stamp of grace is false coin.
81 - Jesus Our Sweet Counselor
Good old Simeon called Jesus the consolation of Israel; and so He was. Before His actual appearance, His name was the day-star; celebrating the passage of darkness, and predicting the rising of the sun. To Him they looked with the same hope which cheers the nightly watchman, when from the lonely castle-top he sees the fairest of the stars, and hails it as the usher of the morning.
When He was on earth, He must have been the consolation of all those who were privileged to be His companions. We can imagine how readily the disciples would run to Christ to tell Him of their griefs, and how sweetly, with that matchless inflection of His voice, He would speak to them, and command their fears be gone. Like children, they would have considered Him as their Father; and to Him every want, every groan, every sorrow, every agony, would at once be carried to Him; and He, like a wise physician, had a balm for every wound; He had mixed a cup of hope for their every care; and readily did He dispense some mighty remedy to alleviate all the fever of their troubles. Oh! it must have been sweet to have lived with Christ. Surely, sorrows were then but joys in masks, because they gave an opportunity to go to Jesus to have them removed. Oh! if God had been willing, some of us may wish, that we could have lain our weary heads upon the chest of Jesus, and that our birth had been in that happy era, when we might have heard His kind voice, and seen His kind look, when He said, "Let the weary ones come to Me.
It behooved Him to slumber in the dust awhile, that He might perfume the chamber of the grave to make it: "No more a charnel house to fence The relics of lost innocence." It behooved Him to have a resurrection, that we, who shall one day be the dead in Christ, might rise first, and in glorious bodies stand upon earth. And it behooved Him that He should ascend up on high, that He might lead captivity captive; that He might chain the demons of hell; that He might tie them to His chariot-wheels, and drag them up high heaven's hill, to make them feel a second overthrow from His right arm, when He should dash them from the pinnacles of heaven down to the deeper depths beneath. "It is for your good that I am going away," said Jesus, "Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you." Jesus must go. Weep, you disciples: Jesus must be gone. Mourn, you poor ones, who are to be left without a Counselor. But hear how kindly Jesus speaks: "I will not leave you as orphans; I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever."
He would not leave those few poor sheep alone in the wilderness; He would not desert His children, and leave them fatherless. Although He had a mighty mission which filled His heart and hand; even though He had so much to perform, that we might have thought that even His gigantic intellect would be overburdened; although He had so much to suffer, that we might suppose His whole soul to be concentrated upon the thought of the sufferings to be endured. Yet it was not so; before He left, He gave soothing words of comfort; like the good Samaritan, He poured in oil and wine, and we see what He promised: "I will send you another Counselor-one who shall be just what I have been, yes, even more; who shall console you in your sorrows, remove your doubts, comfort you in your afflictions, and stand as My vicar on earth, to do that which I would have done had I stayed with you.
82 - Sitting Next to Jesus
Let your face always wear a smile; let your eyes sparkle with gladness; live near your Master; live in the suburbs of the celestial city, and when your time comes you will take on better wings than angels ever wore, and out-soar the cherubim, and climb up where your Jesus sits-sit at His right hand, even as He has overcome and has sat down at His Father's right hand.
83 - A Heart Pounding for Christ
Many a good old gospel blade has been blunt against the hard heart. Many a piece of the true steel that God has put into the hands of His servants has had the edge dulled by being used against the sinner's heart. We cannot reach the soul, but the Holy Spirit can. "My lover thrust His hand through the latch-opening; my heart began to pound for Him" (Song of Solomon 5:4). He can give a sense of blood-bought forgiveness that shall dissolve a heart of stone.
84 - Peace in the Midst of Trouble
The very fact that you have troubles is a proof of His faithfulness; for you have got one half of His legacy, and you will have the other half. You know that Christ's last will and testament has two portions in it. "In this world you will have trouble:" you have got that. The next clause is, "In Me you may have peace." You have that too. "But take heart! I have overcome the world." That is yours also.
85 - Christ is Everything
There will be little else we will want in heaven besides Jesus Christ. He will be our bread, our food, our beauty, and our glorious garment. The atmosphere of heaven will be Christ; everything in heaven will be Christlike: yes, Christ is the heaven of His people.
86 - Warning to the Scorner
Rest well assured, O Scorner, that your laughs cannot alter truth, your ridicule cannot avert your inevitable doom. Though in your foolishness you should make an alliance with death, and sign a covenant with hell-yet swift justice will overtake you, and strong vengeance will strike you down. In vain do you jeer and mock, for eternal truths are mightier than your twisted lies, nor can your sly sayings alter divine truth of a single word of this volume of Revelation. Oh! why do you quarrel with your best friend, and ill-treat you only refuge? There yet remains hope, even for the scorner. Hope in a Savior's veins. Hope in the Father's mercy. Hope in the Holy Spirit's supreme means.
87 - The Provision of God
It is true that you do not have a fiery chariot to take you to heaven; but the angels will carry you to Jesus' waiting arms, and that is just as good. It is true, no ravens bring you food; it is also true that you get your food somehow or other. It is quite certain that no rock gushes out with water; but you always have water to drink. It is true your child has not been raised from the dead; but you must remember that David had a child that was not raised any more than yours. You have the same consolation as he had: "I will go to him; he will not return to me."
88 - Looking the Wrong Direction
Men in the days of Whitfield looked back to the days of Bunyan; men in the days wept for the days of Wycliffe, and Calvin, and Luther; and men then wept for the days of Augustine and Chrysostom. Men in those days wept for the Apostles; and doubtless men in the days of the Apostles wept for the days of Jesus Christ; and no doubt some in the days of Jesus Christ were so blind as to wish to return to the days of the prophets, and thought more of the days of Elijah than they did of the most glorious day of Christ. Some men look more to the past than the present. Rest assured, that Jesus Christ is the same today as He was yesterday, and He will be the same forever.
89 - Sound Preaching
The old truth that Calvin preached, that Chrysostom preached, that Paul preached, is the truth I must preach today, or else be a liar to my conscience and my God. I cannot shape the truth. I know of no such thing as paring off the rough edges of a doctrine. John Knox's gospel is my gospel. That which thundered through Scotland must thunder through England again. the great mass of our ministers are sound enough in the faith, but not sound enough in the way they preach it.
90 - Our Precious Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit champions our cause with Jesus Christ, with groans that words cannot express. O my soul! you are ready to burst within me. O my heart! you are swollen with grief. The hot tide of my emotion would readily overflow the channels of my veins. I long to speak, but the very desire chains my tongue. I wish to pray, but the fervency of my feeling curbs my language. There is a groaning within that cannot be uttered. Do you know who can utter that groaning? Who can understand it, and who can put it into heavenly language, and utter it in a celestial language, and utter it in a celestial tongue, so that Christ can hear it? O yes; it is God the Holy Spirit; He defends our cause with Christ, and then Christ defends it with His Father. He is the advocate who makes intercession for us, with groans that words cannot express.
91 - The Lifegiver
You may take a corpse, you may dress it in all the garments of eternal decency; you may wash it with the water of morality; yes, you may adorn it with the crown of profession, you may put on its forehead a tiara of beauty, you may paint its cheeks, until you make it almost like life itself. But remember, unless the Spirit is there, the worm shall feed on the painted cheek, and corruption will soon seize the body. It is the Spirit that is the one who gives life.
92 - The Holy Spirit's Love For Us
Oh! there is a voice in love; it speaks a language which is its own; it has a dialect and an accent which none can mimic; wisdom cannot imitate it; oratory cannot attain to it; it is love alone which can reach the mourning heart; love is the only handkerchief which can wipe the mourner's tears away. And is not the Holy Spirit a loving comforter? Do you know, O saint, how much the Holy Spirit loves you? Can you measure the love of the Spirit? Do you know how great is the affection of His soul towards you? Go measure heaven with your ruler; go weigh the mountains with your scales; go take the ocean's water, and count each drop; go count the sand on the sea's wide shore; and when you have accomplished all this, you can't tell how much He loves you. He has loved you extensively, He has loved you abundantly, He has loved you forever, and He still shall love you always; surely He is the person to comfort you, because He loves.
93 - The Power of the Spirit
Spiritual farmer! sharpen your plow with the Spirit. Spiritual sower! dip you seed in the Spirit, so it shall germinate; and ask the Spirit to give you grace to scatter it, that it may fall into the right furrows. Spiritual Warrior! sharpen you sword with the Spirit, and ask the Spirit, whose word is indeed a sword, to strengthen your arm to wield it.
94 - The Wicked in Old Age
The young may die; the old must! To sleep in youth is to sleep in a siege; to sleep in old age is to slumber during the attack. What! man, will you that are so near the Maker's court still put Him off with the question "Go your way?" What! procrastinate now, when the knife is at your throat-when the worm is at the heart of the tree, and the branches have begun to wither-when the molars in your mouth fail even now, because they are few, and your eyes that look out of the windows are darkened? The dried up and yellow leaf has come on you, and you are still not ready for your doom!
95 - The Closed Canon of Scripture
The canon of revelation is closed; there is no more to be added; God does not give a fresh revelation, but He rivets the old one. When it has been forgotten, and laid in the dusty closet of our memory, He grabs it out and cleans the picture, but does not paint a new one. There are no new doctrines, but the old ones are often revived. It is not, I say, by any new revelation that the Spirit comforts. He does so by telling us old things over again; He brings a bright light to manifest the treasures hidden in Scripture; He unlocks the vaults in which the truth has long lain, and He points to secret rooms filled with untold riches; but He coins no more, for enough is done.
Believer! there is enough in the Bible for you to live upon forever. If you should outnumber the years of Methuselah, there would be no need for a fresh revelation; if you should live until Christ should return to the earth, there would be no necessity for the addition of a single word; if you should go down as deep as Jonah, or even descend as David said he did, into the depths of hell, still there would be enough in the Bible to comfort you without a supplementary sentence.
96 - The Foolish Gospel Conquers Worldly Wisdom
Wisdom had had its time, and time enough; it had done its all, and that was little enough; it had made the world worse than it was before it stepped upon it, and "now," says God, "foolishness will overcome wisdom; now ignorance, as you call it, will sweep away science; now (says God), humble, childlike faith shall crumble to the dust all the colossal systems your hands have piled up."
He calls His warriors. Christ puts His trumpet to His mouth, and up come the warriors, clad in fisherman's garb, with the dialect of the lake of Galilee-poor humble mariners. Here are the warriors, O wisdom, that are to confound you; these are the heroes who will overcome your proud philosophers; these men are to plant their standard upon your ruined walls, and call them to fall forever; these men and their successors are to exalt a gospel in the world which you may laugh at as absurd, which you may sneer at as folly, but which will be exalted above the hills, and will be glorious even to the highest heavens.
97 - Security
There are moments when the eyes glisten with joy: and we can say, "we are persuaded, confident, certain." I don't wish to distress any one who is under doubt. Often gloomy doubts will prevail; there are seasons when you fear you have not been called, when you doubt your interest in Christ. Ah! what a mercy it is that it is not your hold on Christ that saves you, but His hold on you! What a sweet fact that it is not how you grasp His hand, but His grasp of yours, that saves you.
98 - Thoughts of God
The book of nature is an expression of the thoughts of God. We have God's terrible thoughts in the thunder and lightning; God's loving thoughts in the sunshine and the balmy breeze; God's bounteous, prudent, careful thoughts in the waving harvest and in the ripening meadow. We have God's brilliant thoughts in the wondrous scenes which are beheld from mountaintop and valley; and we have God's most sweet and pleasant thoughts of beauty in the little flowers that blossom at our feet.
99 - Indifference
I remember standing on a seashore once, upon a narrow neck of land, thoughtless that the tide might come up. The tide kept continually washing up on either side, and, wrapped in thoughts, I still stood there, until at last there was the greatest difficulty in getting to shore. You and I stand each day on a narrow neck, and there is one wave coming up there; see, how near it is to your foot; and look! another follows at every tick of the clock; "our hearts, like muffled drums, are beating funeral marches to the tomb."
100 - Dying Grace
A martyr is going to the stake; the men with their axes are around him; the crowds are mocking, but he is marching steadily on. See, they tie him, with a chain around his waist, to the stake; they heap sticks and twigs all about him; the flame is lighted; listen to his words: "Bless the Lord O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name."
The flames are burning around his legs; the fire is burning him even to the bone; see him lift up his hands and say, "I know that my redeemer lives, and though the fire devour this body, yet in my flesh I will see the Lord." Look at him clutch the stake and kiss it, as if he loved it, and hear him say, "For every chain of iron that man tied me with, God will give to me a chain of gold; for all these sticks and twigs, and this disgrace and shame, He will increase the weight of my eternal glory."
See all the lower parts of his body are consumed; still he lives in the torture; at last he bows himself, and the upper part of his body falls over; and as he falls you hear him say, "Into Your hands I commend my spirit." Sir, what wondrous magic was on him? What made that man strong? What helped him to bear that cruelty? What made him stand unmoved in the flames? It was the thing of power; it was the cross of Jesus crucified. For "unto us who are saved it is the power of God."
Added to Bible Bulletin Board's "Spurgeon Collection" by:
Bible Bulletin Board
Columbus, New Jersey, USA, 08022
Websites: www.biblebb.com and www.gospelgems.com
Online since 1986