Grace Gems for December 2000

The crown of universal monarchy!

The following is from Spurgeonís sermon,
"JESUS, THE SHEPHERD" #652. Isaiah 40:11.

Jesus Christ is King in the world today!

The Lord reigns!  Let the earth rejoice!

Jesus Christ wears the crown
   of universal monarchy!

Nothing happens but that which Jesus
  permits,  ordains,  and overrules!

Let empires go to wreck, it is Christ who
breaks them with a rod of iron, and shivers
them like potters' vessels.

Let conflagrations burn down cities, and let
diseases devastate nations; let war succeed
to war, and pestilence to famine, yet still
Jesus rules all things well, and we know that
all things work together for good to those who
love God, who are called according to his purpose!

Aspire to a higher, a nobler, a fuller life!
"Get up into the high mountain."  Isaiah 40:9
(the following is by Spurgeon)

Each believer should be thirsting for God,
for the living God, and longing to climb the
hill of the Lord, and see Him face to face.

We ought not to rest content in the mists of
the valley, when the summit of Tabor awaits us.

My soul thirsts to drink deep of the cup which
is reserved for those who reach the mountain's
summit, and bathe their brows in heaven.
How pure are the dews of the hills, how fresh
is the mountain air, how rich the fare of the
dwellers aloft, whose windows look into the
New Jerusalem!

Many saints are content to live like men in
coal mines, who see not the sun. They eat
dust like the serpent when they might taste
the ambrosial food of angels. They are content
to wear the miner's garb when they might put
on king's robes! Tears mar their faces when they
might anoint them with celestial oil.

Many a believer pines in a dungeon, when he
might walk on the palace roof, and view the
goodly land of Lebanon.

Rouse up, O believer, from your low condition!

Cast away your sloth, your lethargy,
your coldness, or whatever interferes
with your chaste and pure love to Christ,
your soul's Husband.

Make Him the source, the center, and the
 circumference of all your soul's delight.

What enchants you into such folly as to
remain in a pit when you may sit on a throne?

Live not in the lowlands of bondage now that
mountain liberty is conferred upon you.

Rest no longer satisfied with your dwarfish
attainments, but press forward to things
more sublime and heavenly.

Aspire to a higher, a nobler, a fuller life!

Upward to heaven!    Nearer to God!

In His hands
"In proportion as the dear crucified Savior
 reigns in your soul, and his beauties ravish
 your heart; in that proportion you feel that
 all is safe because you are in his hands."

God's children run home
when the storm comes on.

(by Spurgeon)

"O that I knew where I might find him!"
    Job 23:3

In Job's uttermost extremity he cried after
the Lord. The longing desire of an afflicted
child of God is once more to see his Father's
face. His first prayer is not "O that I might be
healed of the disease which now festers in
every part of my body!" nor even "O that I
might see my children restored from the jaws
of the grave, and my property once more
brought from the hand of the spoiler."

But the first and uppermost cry is, "O that I
knew where I might find HIM, who is my God!
that I might come even to his seat!"

 God's children run home
when the storm comes on.

It is the heaven born instinct of a gracious
soul to seek shelter from all ills beneath the
wings of Jehovah. "He that has made his refuge
God," might serve as the title of a true believer.

A hypocrite, when afflicted by God, resents
the infliction, and, like a slave, would run
from the Master who has scourged him.

But not so the true heir of heaven, he
kisses the hand which smote him, and
seeks shelter from the rod in the bosom
of the God who frowned upon him.

Job's desire to commune with God was
intensified by the failure of all other sources
of consolation. The patriarch turned away
from his sorry friends, and looked up to
the celestial throne, just as a traveler turns
from his empty skin bottle, and betakes
himself with all speed to the well. He bids
farewell to earth born hopes, and cries,
"O that I knew where I might find my God!"

Nothing teaches us so much the
preciousness of the Creator, as when
we learn the emptiness of all besides.

Turning away with bitter scorn from earth's
hives, where we find no honey, but many
sharp stings, we rejoice in him whose faithful
word is sweeter than honey or the honeycomb.

In every trouble we should first seek to
realize God's presence with us. Only let us
enjoy his smile, and we can bear our daily
cross with a willing heart for his dear sake.

We are Christ's
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Christ the Glory of His People" #826. Luke 2:32.

We are Christ's by eternal choice.
"You only have I known (or loved) of all the
nations of the earth." The eternal Father has
selected us from among the ruins of the fall,
and given us into the hands of Christ that
we may be his portion, his bride, his jewels,
"according as he has chosen us in him
 before the foundation of the world."

We are Christ's by redemption.
He has redeemed us from among men by a
special and particular redemption which is
distinctive to ourselves.  A price has been
paid for us, an effectual price, which will not
permit for a moment that the objects so
purchased shall ever be lost. "You are not
  your own, you are bought with a price."
The saints are redeemed from among men.
Thus are we Christ's by double bonds- the
gift of the Father, the purchase of his own
blood. The Father gave us to Jesus, and
none shall pluck us of his almighty hands.

We are Christ's by conquest.
We admit it. The Spirit of the living God has
taken us, as it were, like a lamb from the jaws
of the lion. We were once led captives by the
devil, but Christ met the devil and overcame
him in terrific duel, and we, the once willing
captives of the powers of darkness, are now
Christ's portion made free and blessed.  We
are now the possession of our Conqueror,
for he took us out of the hand of the
enemy with his sword and with his bow.
We belong to Christ as the spoil which
he has won from death and hell.

We are Christ's by voluntary dedication
of ourselves to him. Come, beloved, is it not so?
We will confess that there is not a drop of blood
in our veins which does not belong to Jesus, nor
a hair on our head which is not his.

We are Christ's by conjugal bonds
  -married to him as chaste virgins.  His
unbounded love espoused us before time
began, and it has not diminished. He claims
us as his own bride, and we call him the
Husband of our souls, and delight to have it so.

We are Christ's by in vital union
as the members belong to the head.
We are in personal, vital, actual communion
with the Son of God. We are thus his in the
fullest and most absolute sense.

We are Christ's absolute property.

We are Christ's people, wholly belonging to him.

Rend your heart!
"Rend your heart, and not your garments."
   - Joel 2:13
(by Spurgeon)
Garment rending and other outward signs of religious emotion,
are easily manifested and are frequently hypocritical; but to feel
true repentance is far more difficult, and consequently far less
common. Men will attend to the most multiplied and minute
ceremonial regulations; for such things are pleasing to the
flesh; but true religion is too humbling, too heart-searching, too
thorough for the tastes of the carnal men; they prefer something
more ostentatious, flimsy, and worldly. Outward observances are
temporarily comfortable; eye and ear are pleased; self-conceit is
fed, and self-righteousness is puffed up: but they are ultimately
delusive, for in the time of death, and at the day of
judgment, the soul needs something more substantial than
ceremonies and rituals to lean upon. Apart from vital godliness
all religion is utterly vain; offered without a sincere heart,
every form of worship is a solemn sham and an impudent
mockery of the majesty of heaven.

HEART-RENDING is divinely wrought and solemnly felt. It is a
secret grief which is personally experienced, not in mere form,
but as a deep, soul moving work of the Holy Spirit upon the
inmost heart of each believer. It is not a matter to be merely
talked of and believed in, but keenly and sensitively felt in
every living child of the living God. It is powerfully
humiliating, and completely sin purging; but then it is sweetly
preparative for those gracious consolations which proud
unhumbled spirits are unable to receive; and it is distinctly
discriminating, for it belongs to the elect of God, and to them

The text commands us to rend our hearts, but they are naturally
hard as marble: how, then, can this be done? We must take them
to Calvary: a dying Savior's voice rent the rocks once, and it is
as powerful now. O blessed Spirit, let us hear the death cries of
Jesus, and our hearts shall be rent even as men rend their
vestures in the day of lamentation.

Effectual Calling
springs from the divine purpose,
and is wrought by divine energy.
There must be a supernatural
work, or you cannot be saved.

Many find that to be a Christian they must
give up many of the things they love, and
like Lot's wife, they look back and perish.
They go back to the city of destruction.

Then the Lord told Abram, "Leave your country,
your relatives, and your father's house, and go
to the land that I will show you." Genesis 12:1

The effectual call, wherever it comes to a
man, is a separating sword, cutting him off
from old associations.

It makes him feel that this world is not his
country. He lives in it as a stranger lives in
a foreign land. He is in the world, but he is
not of it. His citizenship is in heaven.
He becomes a citizen of another city,
and an alien in these cities of earth.

The very essence of
the Christian faith is
separateness from
the world!

For Christ's sake the Christian man is
henceforth obliged to be separated in
many respects from those of his family
and friends that remain in their sins.

They are living according to the flesh.
They are seeking this world.
Their pleasure is here.
Their comfort below the skies.

The man who is called by grace lives
in the same house, but lives not under
the influence of the same motives,
nor is he ruled by the same desires.

He is so different from others that very
soon they find him out; and, as Ishmael
mocked Isaac, so the sons of the world
mock at the child of God. "A man's enemies
shall be those of his own household."

It is no child's play to be a Christian!

To try to be a worldly Christian
or a Christian worldling, is to
attempt an impossible thing!

"You cannot serve God and mammon."

Whatever it may cost you, if you are truly
called by grace, come out and leave all behind.
We must always unhesitatingly follow the
guidance of our heavenly Father. It is through
much tribulation that we inherit the kingdom.

Brethren, behold the crown which is held forth
to you!   It is no other than everlasting life!
Behold your reward! It is the city whose gates
are pearls, and whose streets are gold.
Your unrivaled portion is ineffable bliss, to be
with Christ, to dwell with him in ecstatic bliss,
world without end.  You have everything to gain,
and that which you have to lose compared with
it, is less than nothing. The present light affliction
incident to a godly life is not worthy to be compared
with the glory which shall be revealed in you.
The above is from Spurgeon's sermon, "Effectual Calling:
Illustrated by the Call of Abram" #843.  Genesis 12:5.

"Electing love has selected some of
the worst of men to be made the best.
Pebbles of the brook Grace turn into
jewels for the Savior's crown. Worthless
dross he transforms into pure gold.
Redeeming love has set apart many of
the worst of mankind to be the reward
of the Savior's passion and death.
Effectual grace calls forth many of the vilest
of the vile to sit at the table of mercy."  -CHS

Sea of ineffable love!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Sown Light"   #836.   Psalm 97:11.

O my soul, what an eternal
satisfaction to you to be
forever with the Lord!
One glimpse of his dear face
on earth has ravished you,
but what must it be forever
without a veil between, to
gaze into that beloved
countenance, and to feel
his love shed abroad in
your heart,  and your
heart plunged into that
sea of ineffable love!

The black drop is swallowed
   up in a sea of victory!

"If to die is but to enter into uninterrupted
 communion with Jesus, then death is
 indeed gain, and the black drop is
 swallowed up in a sea of victory!"
"So shall we ever be with the Lord."
- 1 Thessalonians 4:17

If you want to know
what heaven is
, you can
spell it in five letters, and when you
put the five letters together they look
like this:    J  E  S  U  S.
That is heaven. It is all the heaven
the angels round the throne desire to
know. They want nothing better than
this- to see his face, to behold his glory,
and to dwell in it world without end.
(from Spurgeon's sermon, "Christ the
 Glory of His People" #826. Luke 2:32.)

Stuffed Christians?
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Life's Ever Springing Well" #864. John 4:14.

"We are all Christians."
"Why, we belong to a Christian
 nation; are we not born Christians?"
"Surely we must be all right; we have
 always attended our parish church, is
 not that enough?"
"Our parents were always godly; we were
 born into the church, were we not?  Did
 they not take us up in their arms when
 we were little, and make us members of
 Christ? What more do we lack?"

This is the common talk.

There is no Christian practice, there is
no Christian habit, but what has been,
or will be before long, imitated by people
who have no vital godliness whatever.

A man may appear much like a Christian,
  and yet possess no vital godliness!

Walk through the British Museum, and you
will see all the orders of animals standing
in their various places, and exhibiting
themselves with the utmost possible
propriety. The rhinoceros demurely retains
the position in which he was set at first;
the eagle soars not through the window;
the wolf howls not at night; every creature,
whether bird, beast, or fish, remains in
the particular glass case allotted to it.

But you all know well enough that these
are not the living creatures, but only the
outward forms of them. Yet in what do
they differ? Certainly in nothing which you
could readily see, for the well stuffed
animal is precisely like what the living
animal would have been; and that eye
of glass even appears to have more of
brightness in it than the natural eye of
the creature itself.

Yet you know well enough that there is a
secret inward something lacking, which,
when it has once departed, you cannot restore.

So in the churches of Christ, many professors
are not living believers, but stuffed believers,
Stuffed Christians!

There is all the external of religion, everything
that you could desire, and they behave with a
great deal of propriety, too. They all keep their
places, and there is no outward difference
between them and the living, except upon that
vital point; they lack spiritual life. This is the
essential distinction, spiritual life is absent.

It is almost painful to watch little children
when some little pet of theirs has died, how
they can hardly realize the difference
between death and life!

Your little boy's bird moped for awhile upon
its perch, and at last dropped down in the cage;
and do not you remember how the little boy
tried to set it up, and gave it seed, and filled
its glass with water, and was quite surprised to
think that birdie would not open his little eye
upon his friend as it did before, and would not
take its seed, nor drink its water!

Ah, you finally had to tell the poor boy that
a mysterious something had gone from his
little birdie, and would not come back again.

There is just such a spiritual difference between
the mere professor, and the genuine Christian.

There is an invisible, but most real, indwelling
of the Holy Spirit, the absence or the presence
of which makes all the difference between the
lost sinner and the saint.

A thin slice of godliness over a mass of carnality!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Constancy and Inconstancy: a Contrast."
No. 852.  Hosea 6:3, 4.

"...what should I do with you?" asks the Lord.
"For your goodness vanishes like the morning
mist and disappears like dew in the sunlight."
  Hosea 6:4

Oh, beware of pious veneering!

Beware of the religion which consists
in putting on a thin slice of godliness
over a mass of carnality!

We must have thorough going work
within; the grace which reaches the
core, and affects the innermost spirit
is the only grace worth having.

The absence of the Holy Spirit is the
great cause of religious instability.

Beware of mistaking 'religious excitement'
for the Holy Spirit, or your own resolutions
for the deep workings of the Spirit of God
in the soul.

All that human nature ever paints, God
will burn off with hot irons. All that human
nature ever spins he will unravel and cast
away with the rags.

You must be born from above, you must
have a new nature wrought in you by the
finger of God himself, for of all his saints
it is written, "You are his workmanship,
created anew in Christ Jesus."

Oh, but, everywhere I fear there is an
absence of the Holy Spirit! There is much
getting up of a tawdry morality, barely
skin deep, much crying "Peace, peace,"
where there is no true peace. There is
very little deep heart searching anxiety
to be thoroughly purged from sin.

The hopes of many hypocrites are flimsily
formed, and their confidences ill founded.
It is this which makes deceivers so plentiful,
and fair religious shows so common.

Murdered by human sin!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Fire: the Want of the Times" #854. Lk.12:49.

We find in this Book, the master truth of the
 love of God plainly and repeatedly stated.

We see revealed to us a love of God so vast
as to be incomprehensible, so generous as to
be a theme for adoring wonder throughout
eternity, since the Father gives up his only Son
that he may bleed and die, that we who are
rebellious and undeserving may live through him.

Divine love has been manifested in connection
with a most astonishing display of justice and
severity towards sin. We see God willing to forgive,
but not willing to allow his law to be dishonored,
and therefore giving up his only begotten Son to
die a death of pain and ignominy, in order that the
penalty of a broken law might be rendered to justice,
and yet mercy displayed to rebels.

 We behold the Savior bleeding on the tree as
much to manifest the justice, as the love of God.

 He dies, the Friend of Sinners dies!
murdered by human sin!

Who will not henceforth loathe the murderous thing?

It is impossible to read aright in the illuminated
volume of the cross, printed in crimson characters,
without feeling our hearts burn within us with an
unquenchable ardor.

As we behold our Lord's passion, thoughts that
burn fall into our bosom, holy detestation of sin
lifts the torch of heart searching, and the flame
of true love burns up our lusts.

The love of God to his people!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Deep Calleth unto Deep" #865. Ps. 42:7.

Quietly study the depth of the
love of God to you his people.

He has loved you without a cause.
The grace of God is deeper than the
depths of our sin, higher than the
heights of our rebellion, broader and
longer than the breadths and lengths
of our depravity. Oh, the exceeding
riches of the grace of God!

He has loved you without beginning.
Before years, and centuries, and
millenniums began to be counted,
your name was on his heart. Eternal
thoughts of love have been in God's
bosom towards you.

He has loved you without a pause.
There never was a minute in which he did
not love you. Your name once engraved
upon his hands has never been erased, nor
has he ever blotted it out of the Book of Life.

He has loved you most patiently.
You have often provoked him; you have
rebelled against him times without number,
yet he has never stopped the outflow of his
heart towards you; and, blessed be his name,
he never will. You are his, and you always
shall be his.

He has loved you without boundary.
He could not love you more, for he loves
you like a God; and he never will love you
less.  All his heart belongs to you!
For you, Jesus left the throne of honor
for the cross of shame; the brightness
of glory for the darkness of the tomb.

 Oh, the depths of the love
which is revealed in Calvary!

The incomprehensible love of God is deeper
than hell, and higher than heaven. It is as
long as eternity, and wide as immensity.

You will never, never be able to fathom the
depth of the love of God towards you, in the
gift of his dear Son to be your Redeemer.

Oh, how ought I to love my God who has
so loved me!  Oh, how I ought to hate the
sin which made my Savior bleed!

The agonies of Christ call us
to the slaughter of our sins!

Groaning, sweating, bleeding,
and painfully yielding up his life!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Christ the Glory of His People" #826. Lk.2:32.

Oh! if your eyes are but once favored to
gaze upon him, and your heads but once
permitted to lean upon his loving bosom,
you shall never see anything so glorious
as the person of the Beloved.

Brethren, the moon is a blot, and the
sun a burnt out coal, compared with the
glory of our Immanuel.

It is impossible to exaggerate his glory.

Christ is too lovely for us ever to say a
word that shall approach half way to the
fullness of his unspeakable excellence
and boundless worth!

All over glorious is our precious Lord!

He is a miracle of love,
the astonishment of earth,
the marvel of heaven,
the all in all of our souls!

But if there be a place where, above all others,
we would kiss his feet and wash them with our
tears, and love him best of all, it is Calvary's
cross. How our hearts burn when we think of
his bearing the load of guilt for us--
 Groaning, sweating, bleeding,
and painfully yielding up his life!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Fire: the Want of the Times" #854. Lk.12:49.

Of all things under heaven,
the most intolerant is the
gospel of Jesus Christ.

The gospel demands obedience to itself.

Within its own realm its power is absolute.

Its arguments cut and kill error.

Its teachings lay low every proud
hope, and expose every false way.

The gospel is merciful to the
sinner, but merciless to sin.

It will not endure evil, but wars against
it to overturn it, and to set up a throne
for him whose right it is to reign.

The gospel of Jesus Christ will never
join hands with infidelity or Popery.

It will never enter into league with idolatry.

It cannot be at peace with error.

False religions can lie down side by side
with one another, for they are equally a lie,
and there is a brotherhood between them.

But the true religion, will never rest until
all superstitions are utterly exterminated,
and until the banner of the King eternal,
immortal, invisible, shall wave over every
mosque and minaret, temple and shrine.

Separation from the world's religion!
The following is from Spurgeonís sermon,
"Light, Natural and Spiritual" #660. Gen. 1:1-5.

As soon as the Lord gives to any
believer spiritual light, he begins to
separate himself from the darkness.

The world's religion used to satisfy him. If there
was a pretty looking building, and a good looking
minister who could put his words together well,
and garnish the altar finely, the child of darkness
did not care what he heard; whether the gospel
was preached or not.
But so soon as he receives spiritual light, he cries,
"All this is nothing to me, I need light and truth,
and I cannot go to hear anything but the gospel."

He separates himself from the world's religion,
finds out where Christ is preached, and goes there.

A monster, a hideous thing!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"The Universal Remedy" #834. Isaiah 53:5.

Within each man lies concealed
   the deadly cancer of sin.

If you would see that evil which dwells
in every one of us from our very birth
developing itself upon the surface, you
might soon behold it in all its horror!
But perhaps it were better that you
should not gaze upon a scene so polluting.

In the gambling hells, in the haunts where
drunkards congregate, where thieves assemble,
amid oaths and blasphemies, and lewd language,
and lascivious acts- it is there that sin stalks
forth as a full-grown monster.

In the moral and educated natural man, sin
apparently sleeps like a viper coiled up-
a thing in appearance little to be dreaded,
quiet and powerless as a poor worm.
But before long he feels the viper's tooth,
the poisoned fang envenoms all his blood,
and you see the proof of its deadly poison
in overt and abundant sin.

Men become so covered with the visible
blotches of iniquity, that the spiritual eye
can see in their character the leprosy fully
upon them, and all manner of abominations,
worse than the rottenness of the deadliest
of fleshly diseases, constantly exuding
from their souls!

If we could see sin as it appears to the all
discerning eye of God, we should be more
shocked at the sight of sin than by a vision
of hell. In sin itself there is abomination,
and only abomination. Sin is a something
out of joint with the whole system of the
universe. Sin is a plague, a pest full of
dangers to everything that breathes!
Sin degrades and debases us.

Sin, indeed, is hell-
  hell in embryo,
  hell in essence,
  hell kindling,
  hell emerging from the shell.

hell is but Sin when it has
manifested  and developed
to the full.

Sin is a monster, a hideous thing,
a thing which God will not look upon, and which
pure eyes cannot behold but with the utmost
detestation. A flood of tears is the proper medium
through which a Christian should look at sin.

Man hates the gospel with all his heart!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Fire: the Want of the Times" #854. Lk.12:49.

Brethren, there is nothing in the
gospel, apart from the Spirit of God,
which can save a man, for man
hates the gospel with all his heart!

Though the reasonableness of the gospel
of Jesus ought to make the belief of it
universal, yet its plain dealing with human
sin excites deadly antagonism. Therefore,
the gospel itself would make no progress
were it not for the divine power.

There is an invisible arm which pushes forward
the conquests of the truth. There is a fire unfed
with human fuel, which burns a way for the truth
of Jesus Christ into the hearts of men.


The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Unsound Spiritual Trading" #849. Prov. 16:2.

"All a man's ways seem innocent to him.
 But motives are weighed by the Lord."
    Proverbs 16:2.

There is a propensity in human nature
which leads men, even when they are
most wrong, to judge themselves most right.

Each man thinks each man guilty, but himself.

The judgment of man concerning himself is
not final, and there comes a day when the
Lord who weighs the motives will reverse
the verdict of a perjured conscience, and
make the man to stand no longer in the
false light which his conceit has thrown
around him, but in the true light, in which
all his fancied merit shall vanish as a dream.

Conscience is now placed in connection
with a depraved nature, which forbids
its accurate judgment.

The laws of God stand sternly and inflexibly
the same, and if we deviate from the right
way through this false judgment of ours,
we shall be none the less guilty, and we
shall find our fate to be terrible.

However well you may cajole yourselves with
the idea that your way is right and innocent,
yet the inevitable judgment day will come to
end all delusions, however pleasant.

The Lord, who weighs the motives, will make
short work of these bubbles; he will unmask
the impostors, smash to pieces these shams,
and leave the man to cry out and weep and
wail among dragons and the fiends.

"All a man's ways seem innocent to him.
 But motives are weighed by the Lord."
      Proverbs 16:2.

Ah, my much abused, much neglected heart!
How have I allowed you to wander, to be
enamored, enchained, won, and possessed
by others!   How has your spiritual verdure
withered, how have your fresh springs dried,
your beauty faded, and your strength decayed!
How cold, how inconstant, how unfaithful,
how unkind have you been to your best,
your dearest, your heavenly Friend!

It is beneath the cross alone
that sin shall be seen, hated,
conquered, and forsaken.
Sin, guilt,  unbelief, impenitence,
cannot live a moment under
the sacred shadow of the cross
of Christ. Go there, my soul,
and weep, mourn, and love.

Drag your foe there, and it is slain!

Your transgressions, deep as scarlet
and as crimson, shall not be of too
deep a dye if you but plunge into
the fountain of Christ's blood.
(from Octavius Winslow's "Self Communion")

Give no glory to this rubbish!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Christ the Glory of His People" #826. Luke 2:32.

Alas! alas! It makes a Christian's blood
boil to see glory given to a pack of scamps
who call themselves priests!

Does it not make a man feel, when you see
pictures of 'his holiness' and the cardinals,
and so on, scattering their benedictions at
the Vatican, or at St. Peter's, while admiring
crowds fall down and worship them, that it
were infinitely better to bow to the devil himself?

We give glory unto God, but not a particle
of glory to anything in the shape of a man,
or an angel either.

Have I not stood and seen the crowds by
hundreds fall down and worship images
and dressed up dolls?  I have seen them
worship bones and old teeth; I have seen
them worship a skeleton, dressed out in
modern costume said to be the skeleton
of a saint.

I have marveled to see people so infatuated
as to think that such idolatry was pleasing
to the most high God.

We, brethren, the people of God, who know
Christ, can give no glory to this rubbish,
but turn away from it with horror!

Our glory must be given to
Christ, and to Christ alone!

Christ and Christ only must be the grand
object of the Christian; the promotion of
his glory must be that for which he is willing
to live, and for which, if needs be, he would
be prepared to die.

Oh! down, down, down, with everything else,
   but up, up, up, with the cross of Christ!

Down with your baptism, and your masses, and
your sacraments!  Down with your priest-craft,
and your rituals, and your liturgies!  Down with
your fine music, and your pomp, and your robes,
and your garments, and all your ceremonials.

But up, up, up, with the doctrine of the
 naked cross, and the expiring Savior!

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"The Fulness of Jesus the Treasury of Saints"
NO. 858.  John 1:16.

With great reluctance we give up our
flattering opinions of ourselves.  We find
it difficult to discard of the notion of our
own inherent merit. It is hard to drag man
away from the rock of self-justification.
He is glued so fast to the great stone of
self-conceit, which lies close by the gates
of hell, that a stronger than Hercules is
needed to tear him from it; and even
such a deliverer must rip him from it,
leaving the skin behind.

From the gate of the City of Destruction
up to the pearl gate of the New Jerusalem,
it is all grace. The road to glory is paved
with stones of grace. The chariot in which
we ride to heaven is all of grace. The
strength that draws it, and the axle that
bears it up, is all of grace and grace alone.

In the whole covenant of grace, from the
first letter of the charter down to its last
word, there is nothing at all of merit or
man's goodness, but it is grace, grace, grace!

Oh, how this casts mire into the
 face of human self-sufficiency!

O for a gospel that reveals the sinner
as saved by grace from first to last,
that God may have all the praise!

The way of self righteousness!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"The Old Way of the Wicked" #859. Job 22:15-17.

The unsaved talk of their merits, prayers, and
tears. They will, if they can, find something of
their own in which to trust.  They wrap their
miserable rags about them, and claim that
they are well clad.  Being fascinated by self
deceit, they imagine that they are rich and
increased in goods when they are naked,
and poor, and miserable.  They will not lie
at the feet of Jesus, and receive salvation
as a gift of mercy, pure mercy!

The way of self righteousness is trodden
by tens of thousands of men. Ah, your church
goings and your chapel goings, your goings to
the sacrament, your baptism, your confirmation,
your ceremonies of all sorts and kinds, your gifts
to the poor, your contributions to charities, your
amiable speeches, your repetitions of your
liturgies, and your prayers; these are rested
on as the rock of your salvation.

Beware, I entreat you, for this is the way of
the Pharisee when he thanked God that he
was not as other men.  It is the way of sinful
human nature which always goes about to
establish its own righteousness, and will not
submit itself to the righteousness of Christ.

As surely as the Pharisees were condemned
as a generation of vipers, and could not escape
the damnation of hell, so surely every one of us,
if we set up our righteousness in the place of
Christ's righteousness, will meet with condemnation,
and will be overthrown by God's sudden wrath!

The velvet paw of the tiger of sin!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
BROKEN BONES.  #861.   Psalm 51:8.

"... the bones you have crushed ..."

Children of God cannot sin cheaply.

Lost people may sin, and in this life
they may prosper, yes, and sometimes
prosper by their sins.

But those whom God loves will always find
the way of transgression to be hard. Their
follies will cost them that peace of mind,
cost them their present comfort, and may
even cost them all but their souls.

O beware, you believers, who are just
now tempted by the sweets of sin, and
remember the wormwood and gall which
will be found in the dregs thereof!

You who feel the soft blandishments of
sin to be so pleasing to your flesh, and are
ready to yield to its gentle fascinations,
remember that the softness of its touch
will all disappear, and it will be towards
you as a huge hammer, or like the crushing
wheels of the locomotive, crushing your
spirit with anguish!

The velvet paw of the tiger of sin
  conceals a lacerating claw!

                O Beware!

O brethren, you who are lingering on the
brink of sin, and are beginning to slip with
your feet, may the thought of these broken
bones awaken you from your dangerous
lethargy as with a thunderclap, and may
you fly at once to the cross, and to the
fountain filled from Jesus' veins, and begin
your spiritual career anew with more
earnestness and watchfulness than you
have ever shown before.
"... the bones you have crushed ..."

Black envelopes!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"All These Things- A Sermon With Three Texts"

See how Jacob dwells upon his troubles-
"Everything is against me." -Genesis 42:36

Our notation of our trials is very apt to
present them in exaggerated number, but
when we come to count our mercies, as a
usual rule our tendency is to diminish them.
We magnify the number of our troubles,
and underestimate our many benefits.

Sitting alone, silent in our sorrow, crushed
out of all hope, we claim the unhappy right
to declare, "Everything is against me."
and yet, beloved, it is not so.

We frequently talk of our sorrows in language
larger than the truth would warrant. We write
ourselves down as solitary in the realms of
misery, whereas we do but bear the common
burdens of ordinary men.

We dream that no others have ever passed
along our rugged path, whereas the road
is hard with the footsteps of the flock.

We imagine that the furnace has been heated
seven times hotter for us, whereas, compared
with martyrs, and the afflicted in all ages, and
especially compared with our Master, it is
probable that our griefs are of the lighter kind.

We have said, "Why has God dealt this way
with me? Why are his strokes so multiplied?
Why are my wounds so blue? Oh, why am I
thus chastised? Why does he put cross upon
cross upon my galled shoulders, and crush
me into the dust with heaviness of sorrow?"

We are a thousand fools in one to be
caviling at God's ways, and saying,
"Everything is against me."

Peace, child of God, peace.
  Your Father loves you.

It is not possible for him to measure out to
you a crumb of sorrow more than is needed,
nor a grain of bitterness more than your soul
absolutely requires for its spiritual health.
Probably we are never so much in spiritual
prosperity, as when plunged in adversity.

Unbelief reckons our best things to be our
worst.  God sends his mercies to us
in black envelopes, and we sit down
crying over their dismal covering, and
dare not open the letter and read the
heavenly news written within.

The nobility of faith would say,  "The Lord
gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed
be the name of the Lord."  "Shall we receive
good at the hand of the Lord? and shall we
not also receive evil?"

Our trials and afflictions are medicinal.
There are spiritual diseases which would
corrupt our spirit if not checked, kept down,
and destroyed by the daily crosses which
the Lord lays upon our shoulders. Just as
the fever must be held in check by the bitter
draught of quinine, so must the bitter cup of
affliction rebuke our rising pride and worldliness.

We would exalt ourselves above measure,
and provoke the Lord to jealousy against us,
were it not that trouble lays us low.

None of us shall know until we read our
biography in the light of heaven, from what
inbred sins, foul corruptions, damnable
uncleanliness, and detestable lusts we have
been delivered, by being driven again and
again along the fiery road of affliction.

Adversities are the sharp knives with which
God cuts from us the deadly ulcers of our sins!

They are the two-edged swords with which
he slays our enemies which lurk within us.

He must prune us and trim us as the gardener
his trees, otherwise we shall bring forth no fruit.

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
 "Grey Hairs" No. 830. Hosea 7:9.

"If any man loves the world, the
 love of the Father is not in him."

Of all the vices, none is more contrary
to true religion than Covetousness.
Grace may exist where there are many
occasional sins, but never where there
is abiding Covetousness.

Covetousness, which few men
will confess, is yet a very common sin
of professing Christians.

Beware of growing Covetous, for this
is of all sins one of the most insidious.

Many a man, when he begins to accumulate
   wealth, begins also to ruin his soul.

Instead of doing more for God he does less.
The more he saves the more he wants, and
the more he wants of this world, the less he
craves for the world to come.

This disease creeps upon men as slowly as
certain infectious diseases, which slumber
in the blood for months, until they find
occasion to manifest themselves.

Watch against a grasping spirit, dear friend.

If you find the money stick to your hands,
mind what you are at. It is all well enough
for you to seek to make all you can rightly;
you are bound to do so, and to use it properly.

But when the gold begins to cleave to you,
it will eat as a canker, and will soon prove
your ruin unless God prevent it.

Take a bright knife from your table and bury
it into the earth in your garden, and leave
it there, and see how it will rust.  This is
what will become of your soul: put it into
the earth, and keep it there, it must corrode.

Let us not be content to tarry down below
in the marshland of the poor poverty stricken
religion of this present day. But let us climb
the high mountains where the sun of God's
grace is shining brightest, and stand there
enjoying communion with him, leaving the
world beneath.