Grace Gems for February 2000

The pilgrim

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

A pilgrim bound for the Celestial City cannot go through
the world, even through the worst part of it, such as
Vanity Fair, without being noticed, and questioned,
and sought after, and if possible ensnared.

A real Christ?
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

The Christ of a great many professors is only fit to occupy a
niche on the church wall, as a dead, inactive, but revered person.

Jesus is not a ‘Real Christ' to many, he is not a Christ who can
really befriend them in the hour of grief; not a brother born for
adversity, not a condescending companion.

But the Christ of the well-taught Christian, is a sympathizing,
practical friend, who is actually near, entering into our sorrows,
sharing in our crosses, and taking a part with us in all the battle of life.

Unless almighty grace shall supervene!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

We shall never be out of gunshot of the devil
  until we have crossed the river of death.

Our carnal minds are like gun-powder.
They only need a spark;  and ah, what an explosion there would
be with any of us.   May the Lord keep the sparks away.

Let us be very vigilant and very careful; there is an enemy behind
every hedge; there is a foe waiting for us at every step; and before
this day is over, you and I may have slipped and have fallen into sin,
to our own perpetual hurt and hindrance, unless almighty grace shall

More Enochs!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"The Real Presence, the Great Need of the Church"

Oh, for more Enochs- Men Who Walk With God,
whose habitual spirit is that of close communion with Jesus,
meditating upon him, yes more than that, sympathizing with him,
drinking into his spirit, changed into his likeness, living over again
his life, because he is in them the Monarch of Their Souls.

I would beg every believer to ask himself a few questions, such as these:
Am I walking in constant fellowship with Christ?  If I am not, why not?
Is it that I am worldly?     Am I indulging myself in any sin?
Is it that I am proud, or indolent, or envious, or careless?
Is there anything whatever that divides me from Christ my Lord?

Where there is a prayerful, careful, holy, loving, believing walk
towards Jesus, the fellowship of the saint with his Lord will not
be broken, but it may continue for months and years.

Spiritually Sick?
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Alas! my brethren, as in this world our bodies are subject to many
sicknesses, so our souls also, by reason of the body of this death with
which we are encompassed, are often sorely afflicted with sin, spiritual
sickness, and an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the Lord.

We are not what we Might be,
we are not what we Should be,
we are not what we Shall be,
we are not what we Wish to be.

I fear that many of us are not walking in the light of God's
countenance, are not resting with our heads upon the Savior's
bosom, nor sitting with Mary at the Master's feet.

We dwell in Kedar rather than Zion, and
sojourn in Mesech rather than Jerusalem.

Spiritual sickness is very common in the church of God,
and the root of the mischief lies in Distance from Jesus,
following Christ afar off, and yielding to a drowsy temperament.

Away from Jesus, away from joy.
Without the sun the flowers pine;
without Jesus our hearts faint.

Bliss Beyond What the Angels Know
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,
"Love's Vigilance Rewarded"

Why me Lord?

Words cannot express the joy of heart which I feel in knowing that
Jesus is with me, and that he has loved me with an everlasting love.

I shall never understand, even in heaven, Why
the Lord Jesus Should Ever Have Loved Me.

There is no love like it-  Why Was it Fixed Upon Me?

Have you never felt that you could go in, like David, and sit before the
Lord, and say, "Who am I, O Lord God? and what is my house, that
you have brought me here?"

Yet wonderful as it is, it is true; Jesus Loves His Believing People,
loves them now at this very moment. Do you not rejoice in it?

I assure you that, in the least drop of the love of Christ when it is
consciously realized, there is more sweetness than there would be
in all heaven without it.

Talk of bursting barns, overflowing wine-vats, and riches
treasured up-  these give but a poor solace to the heart.

But the Love of Jesus, this Is Another Word for Heaven.
It is a marvel that even while we are here below we should be
permitted to enjoy a Bliss Beyond What the Angels Know!

Worse Than the Beasts!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

If he has loved us with an everlasting love, if he loved us even when we
were his enemies, and  loved us so as to take upon himself our nature,
if this dear Son of God loved us so that he became man for our sakes,
and, being found in fashion as a man, humbled himself, and became
obedient unto death, even the death of the cross —
      Oh! then, we must love him in return.

We would be Worse Than the Beasts That Perish if, conscious of such
love as this, we did not feel that it melted us, and that, being melted, our
soul did not bow down in love to him alone!

Can you stand at the cross-foot, and not kiss the feet of him who
   was wounded for your transgressions?

Gaze Upon That Face!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

I fear we do not enough Gaze Upon That Face covered with the
bloody sweat, for if we did, we would be more like him, we
would love him better; we would live more passionately for him,
and would spend and be spent, that we might promote his glory.

What a pity!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

I know churches in which there are many who make a profession,
but, ah me, it is a pity that they should, for their life does
not adorn their doctrine, and their temper is not consistent
with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

They live like worldlings- to amass money, or to carry on
business, or to enjoy good eating and drinking, or to dress
and go to parties: they are as much for 'this world' as if
they were never renewed, and it is to be feared they never were.

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

It is shocking to find men and women speaking fluently about
religion, and yet their houses are a disgrace to Christianity.

My son, give me your . . .
he following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

When a man has true love to Christ, it is sure to lead him to
dedication. There is a natural desire to give something to the
person whom we love, and true love to Jesus compels us to give
ourselves to him.

One of the earliest acts of the Christian's life is to take
ourselves, and lay body, soul, and spirit upon the altar of
consecration, saying, "Here I am; I give myself to you."

"My son, give me your HEART" -this is what Jesus asks for.

If you love him, you must give him this.

I must love Him!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Did you love me Jesus, King of heaven, Lord of angels,
 Master of all worlds- did you set your heart on ME?

What? did you love me from of old, and
 in eternity choose me to yourself?

Did you continue to love me as the ages rolled on?

Did you come from heaven to earth that you might win me to be
your spouse, and do you love me so that you do not leave me
alone in this poor desert world; and are you this very day
preparing a house for me where I shall dwell with you forever?

A very wretch, Lord, I should prove had I no love to you!

I MUST love you- it is impossible for me to resist you.

The Thought That You Love Me Has Compelled My Soul To Love You.

Me! me! what was there in me- could you see beauties in me?
I see none in myself; my eyes are red with weeping, because
of my blackness and deformity; I have said even to the sons
of men, "Look not upon me, for I am black."

       And do you see beauties in ME?
What a quick eye must you have, no, rather it must be that you have
made my eyes to be your looking-glass, and so you see yourself in me,
and it is your image that you love; surely you could not love me.

That ravishing text in the Canticles, where Jesus says to the spouse,
    "You are all fair my love, there is no spot in you."
Can you imagine Christ saying that to you?   And yet he has said it,
    "You are all fair my love, there is no spot in you."

He has put away your blackness, and you stand in his sight as perfect
as though you had never sinned, and as full of loveliness as though
you were what you shall be, when made like unto him at last.

Oh brothers and sisters, some of you can say with emphasis,
   "Did he love me, then I must love him."

The Egyptian dog!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

The old Puritan pastors frequently compared their hearers to the
Egyptian dog that ran to the Nile, and drank, and then ran away.
Their hearers came up to the meeting-house, and heard the minister,
took a little sip of the gospel, which sufficed them, and then they
were off.

One preacher said that he wished they were like the fishes-
not come and lap at the stream, as the dog did, but swim in it,
and live in it.

There are too many, in this age, who are content with hearing
a little of Christ's love; a sip by the way is all that they
seem to need.

But it would be far better if you could come up to Rutherford's ideal-
"I would have my soul sunk over its masthead in a sea of love to Christ.
 I would be sunken fifty fathoms deep in the mighty shoreless ocean of
 his love, so that there might be nothing left of me, and that I might
 be swallowed up in love to Christ, and in Christ's love to me."

Mr. Pride!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Our very 'perfect' brethren, although they do not see it,
generally exhibit some glaring imperfection if you let
them talk for five minutes.

If you knock at the door to see if Mr. Pride is at home,
you need not praise them long before he will show his
full-length portrait.

We are thankful for these brethren so far as they are saints,
for good people are scarce; but I wish they would not tell us
so much about their saintliness, for I have noticed the noisiest
thing that goes down the street is the dust-cart.

He who makes most noise about his own perfection has the least of it.

Let us be careful whenever we rise to the summit of the hill;
careful to stay up, careful that we so act when we are up,
that we do not come down with a crash.

This Love Is Mine!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Christ's love to his people love is no new thing.
He loved us long before we were born.
When his foreknowledge sketched us in his mind's eye,
he beheld us in love.   He proved his love, too.
It was not merely contemplative love, but it was
Practical Love, for he died for us before we knew
anything of him, or were even here to learn about him.

His love is of such a wondrous kind that he always will
love us. When heaven and earth have passed away, and
shall be rolled up, or be put away like a worn-out
vesture, he will still love us as he loved us at the first.

The Greatest Wonder to Me Is That this Unpurchasable Love,
This Unending Love Is Mine!  and you, my brethren and
sisters, can always say, each one of you, if you have been
regenerated, "This Love Is Mine! the Lord Jesus Christ loves
me with a love I never could have purchased!"

Aqueous Fluid to an Infant's Brow!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

The most unpopular truth in the world is this sentence which
fell from the lips of Christ--   "You must be born again."

Consequently, there are all sorts of inventions to remove the
truth out of those words. "Oh, yes!" say some, "you must be born
again, but that means the application of aqueous fluid to an
  infant's brow."

As God is true, that teaching is a lie; there is no grain or
shade of truth within it. No operation that can be performed
by man can ever regenerate the soul.  It is the work alone of
God the Holy Spirit, who creates us anew in Christ Jesus.

Men do not like that truth.

Spiritual Truth Still Displeases the Natural Man.

The love of your heart
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

If you do not give to God your heart, you have given him nothing.

If you do not give to God your soul, if you do not love him, if
you do not serve him because you love him, if you do not come
to him, and surrender to him your inner self, you may have
been baptized, — immersed or sprinkled, — you may have come to
the communion table; you may have bowed your knees until your
knees have grown horny, you may have prayed until you are hoarse,
and wept until the fountains of your eyes are dry, you may have
given all your gold, and lacerated every member of your body with
mortifications, and starved yourself to a skeleton- but you have
truly done nothing towards obtaining love to Christ.
The substance of your house is utterly scorned if you offer
it to the Lord in the stead of the love of your heart.

Love he must have; this is his lawful demand.
His people delight to render it; and if
you do not, then you are none of his.

Kiss the rod!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

God's children do not love him simply because he caresses
them, for if he chastens them, they love him still, and
kiss the rod with which he smites them.

The old man
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Why does God not remove the old sinful nature out of the Christian?

drives him humbly to confess his own nothingness,
excludes all boasting from his tongue,
compels him to trust in his God,
takes away from him his propensity to trust in himself,
leads him to value the precious blood which cleanses him,
to prize the Holy Spirit who sanctifies him,
to rejoice in the faithfulness, and patience,
of God who still continues to be gracious to him.

And oh! what songs will the man of God sing when he gets to heaven!
How much sweeter will be the music, because of the conflict!
How much more glorious the victory, because of the warfare!

If I could be totally delivered from sin, root and branch, I
certainly would; but yet am I conscious that no Christian would
glorify God so much in heaven as he now does, if there were not
sin to be contended with. A creature that could not sin, could
scarcely show forth much of the praise of God by its holiness;
but that the creature can sin, nay, that there is a strong
drawing towards sin, and yet the divine grace keeps a man from
it, and sanctifies him even to perfection, why this will make
the song come swelling up of "Hallelujah! hallelujah! hallelujah!"

If no adversaries had been fought, then no victories could have
been won; if there were no temptations for us to struggle with,
then there would have been no elbow-room for our faith, and no
power for the display of the bare arm of God.

Many believers would have grown too proud to be borne with,
if some infirmity had not plucked the plume from their helmets
and made them mourn with brokenness of heart before God.

God can bring good out of evil by his overruling grace,
while on the other hand our good works have often been
the greatest curse we have ever had!

Good works have puffed us up, and so have led us into pride;
while our sins, though pulling us down, have, through almighty
grace, led us to work for eternity.

This Sea of Love!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Christian, turn it over in your mind — "Christ loves you!"
-not a little; not a little as a man may love his friend;
not even as a mother may love her child; for she may forget
the infant of her womb.

Jesus loves you with the highest degree of love that is
possible; and what more can I say, except I add, he loves
you with a degree of love that is utterly impossible to man.

No finite mind could, if it should seek to measure it,
get any idea whatever of the love of Christ towards us.

You know, when we come to measure a drop with an ocean,
there is a comparison. A comparison I say there is,
though we should hardly be able to get at it; but when
you attempt to measure our love with Christ's, the finite
with the infinite, there is no comparison at all.

Though we loved Christ ten thousand times as much as we do,
there would even then be no comparison between our love to him
and his love to us. Can you believe this now? — "Jesus, loves me!"

Why, to be loved by others here on earth often brings the tear
to one's eye. It is sweet to have the affection of one's fellow;
but to be LOVED BY GOD, and to be loved so intense — so loved
that you have to leave it as a mystery the soul cannot fathom —
you cannot tell how much!

Be silent, O my soul! and be silent too before your God,
  and lift up your soul in prayer thus —
"Jesus, take me into this Sea of Love, and let me be ravished
by a sweet and heavenly contentment in a sure confidence that
you have loved me and given yourself for me."

Cast the Links of Your Love About Me
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Give me but a vision of the Crucified, let me see that thorn-crowned
brow, let me but gaze into his dear languid eyes so full of love for
me, and I will then say, "My Master, through floods or flames, if you
shall lead, I'll follow where you go. When the many turn aside, I
will still cling to you, and witness that you have the living Word,
and that there is none upon earth that I desire beside you. I will
give up the treasures of Egypt, for I have respect unto the recompense
of the reward. I will let the ingots of gold go, every one of them,
I will cast them into the sea without regret; but if you will abide
in the vessel, my soul shall be content. Bind me to your altar, for
I am but flesh and blood, and may start aside in the trial-hour.
Cast the Links of Your Love About Me; Chain Me to Yourself; Yes,
Crucify Me; Nail Me to Your Cross, and Let Me Be Dead to the World,
for then the world will leave off tempting a corpse. Let me be
dead with you, for then the world that cast you out, may cast me
out, too, and be done with me; and it were well then to be counted
as the off scouring of all things for your dear sake, my Lord!"

'Sham' Redemption
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Christ's 'Church' is his by purchase.

There are some who say that 'all men' are Christ's by purchase.

But, beloved, you and I do not believe in a
 'Sham' Redemption which does not redeem.

We do not believe in a 'Universal Redemption' which extends
even to those who were in hell before the Savior died, and
which includes the fallen angels, as well as unrepentant men.

We believe in an 'Effectual Redemption', and can never agree with
those who would teach us that Christ's blood was shed in vain.

The good Shepherd laid down his life for HIS SHEEP.

Christ loved HIS CHURCH, and gave himself for it.

He bought HIS OWN PEOPLE with his blood.

Hot with Infinite Affection!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

I tell you, redeemed soul, that God sees you as much as
if there were no others for his eyes to look upon!

And he cares for you as infinitely, and with as undivided a heart,
as if you were the only soul that he ever bought with his blood!

If you were his only elect one, his only redeemed one,
his only loved one, he could not deal with you more
tenderly and more lovingly than he is dealing with you now.

He can always see you, though you cannot always see him.
When your eye of your faith is dim, his eye of his care is not.

When your heart seems dead and cold toward him, his
heart is still Hot with Infinite Affection Toward You.

Out of the wilderness!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Once you and I pined in the wilderness, and sighed after God
from a barren land. All around us was the wilderness of this
world, a howling wilderness of danger, and need, and disorder.

We said of the world at its very best, "Vanity of Vanities,
All Is Vanity." Do you remember how you roamed, seeking rest
and finding none? Your way was the path of darkness, which
leads unto death. Then you were poor and needy, and sought
water and there was none, and your tongue cleaved unto the
roof of your mouth for thirst.

Then came the Lord that bought you, and he sought you until
he brought you into the gardens of his love, where he
satisfied you with the river of the water of life, and
filled you with the fruits of his Spirit, and now you
dwell in a goodly land.

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

The More you see Jesus,
the More you know him,
the More you live with him,
the More reason will you have for loving him.

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

What is most needed in all religious exercises
  is the motion and exercise of the soul.

'Soul-worship' is the soul of worship, and if you take away
the soul from the worship, you have killed the worship;
it becomes dead and barren.

There are 'professors' who are perfectly content if they have
gone through the 'mechanical' part of public devotion. If they
have occupied their seats, joined in the hymns and the prayers,
and listened to the preaching, they go away quite content and easy.
They would not like to be absent from the solemn assembly, and
their conscience would prick them if they neglected the outward
ordinances, but having gone through them, and complied with the
'expected form', they are perfectly content with themselves,
and think they have done that which is lawful and right, lovely
and excellent.

Now, it is never so with the child of God.
If his soul is awakened from the torpor of death, and his
sensibilities quickened into the vigor of life, he will feel
that, unless in the song he has really praised God in strains
of gratitude with emotions of thankfulness, he has rather
mocked his heavenly Father than acceptably adored him.

He knows that prayer, if it is not the soul that speaks with God,
is but the 'carcass of prayer', destitute alike of the sweet savor
which can find acceptance with God, and of the sweet satisfaction
that can bring refreshment to one's own breast.
When he hears the word preached, he longs to feel it penetrate
his heart, even as the rain soaks into the soil.

Beloved, in our public services we ought to account nothing
truly and rightly done which is not done with the heart.

Heartless worship is unacceptable to God- He cannot receive it.

If we have not thrown our heart into it, depend upon it God
will never take it to his heart and be pleased with it.

Only that prayer which comes from our heart can get to God's heart.

If we pray only from the lips, or from the throat, and not low down
from the very affections of our nature, we shall never reach the
affections of our Father who is in heaven.

I am afraid we may get satisfied with ourselves, especially if we
are regular in private Scripture reading, private prayer, family
prayer, and public prayer, while instead of being satisfied with
these exercises we ought to be weeping over them and deploring the
formal and heartless manner in which we are prone to discharge them.

Be it always recollected that we do not pray at all, unless
the soul is drawn out in pleading and beseeching the Lord.
With every kind of religious exercise, 'the soul' is the
standard of the whole compass of worship.

A certain cure for every ill
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Communion with Christ is a Certain Cure For Every Ill.

Whether it be the bitterness of woe, or the cloying
overabundance of earthly delight, close fellowship
with the Lord Jesus will take the gall from the one,
and the satiety from the other.

Live near to Jesus, Christian, and it is matter of
secondary import whether you live on the 'mountain of
honor' or in the 'valley of humiliation'.

Live near to Jesus, and the glowing coals of the
furnace cannot consume you, nor the chill blasts
of wintry affliction destroy you.

Living near to Jesus, you are covered with the wings
of God, and underneath you are the everlasting arms.

Heart or Head?
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

When you really come to see Jesus, and to say, "I love him;
my heart yearns toward him; my delight is in him; he has
won my love, and holds it in his own heart," then you BEGIN
to know him.

Brethren, true religion has many sides to it-
true religion is Practical, but it is also Contemplative.

It is not true religion at all if it is not full of love
and affection to Jesus. Jesus must reign in your Heart,
or else, though you may give him what place you like in
your Head, you have not truly received him.

The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Love to Jesus constrains us to give over ALL that we have to him,
while faith appropriates ALL that Jesus has to itself.

Beloved, we are joint heirs with him-
  ALL that we have is his,
  and ALL that he has is ours!

Health to your spirit
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Love to Christ is the fittest and most powerful motive
to holy service. Love to Jesus is the fountain of courage,
the mother of self-denial, and the nurse of steadfastness.

Strive then for a well assured sense of the Savior's love.

Do not be content until you possess it, for it will be health
to your spirit and marrow to your bones: it will be a girdle
of strength to your loins and a chain of honor about your neck.

The spot remover!
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

The Lord has said, concerning every one of his people-
"You Are All Fair, My Love; There Is No Spot in You."

But you say, "Why, now, I am all covered over
with spots and blemishes and have no beauty."

But the Lord Jesus Christ has washed you with his
blood, and covered you with his righteousness.
Do you think he can see any imperfection in that?

You are members of his body, united to him.
In Christ you are without spot or wrinkle, or any such thing.

You are all spots in yourself, but He Sees You as He Intends
to Make You Before He Is Done with You, and He Can Discern
Unspeakable Beauties in You.

For contemplation
The following is from Spurgeon's sermon,

Not all the love of angels, nor all the joys of Paradise,
are so dear to Christ as the love of his poor people,
sprinkled with sin, and compassed with infirmity.

If you saw him standing here tonight, and looking into your
eyes, and saying to you personally — "You love me, I know that
you love me, your love is to me better far than wine;" would
you not fall at his feet and say, "Lord, is my love so sweet to
you? then shame upon me that I should give you so little of it."