“Behold, I make all things new!”

OFI has a great quote from Spurgeon here.   It’s about finding your joy in Christ, the only source of all lasting joy.  Note that I’m not saying that you can’t find joy in things here on earth… Far from it.  You can find a short-lived joy in the things of the world, which do not satisfy (see Ecclesiastes, or any believer whom God has chastened because of their love for the things of this world).  You can also find real joy in things received from Christ while on this earth – such as your spouse – things received from and blessed by Him. 

If you haven’t already, may you begin to find lasting joy in Christ this year!  It is worth all that you have and are in exchange.

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Spurgeon on OFI

This was on OFI on January 30th:

Spurgeon on objections to Isaiah 45:22: “Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other!”But thou sayest sin will not let thee look. I tell thee, sin will be removed the moment thou dost look. “But I dare not; He will condemn me; I fear to look.” He will condemn thee more, if thou dost not look. Fear, then, and look; but do not let thy fearing keep thee from looking. “But He will cast me out.” Try Him. “But I cannot see Him.” I tell you, it is not seeing, but looking. “But my eyes are so fixed on the earth, so earthly, so worldly.” Ah! but, poor soul, He giveth power to look and live. He saith – “Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.”

– Charles Spurgeon, Sovereignty and Salvation

Spurgeon on godly sorrow

Spurgeon’s sermon on 2 Cor. 7:10 is well worth the read. Here’s a small excerpt:

I. First, then, I want to try to REMOVE CERTAIN ERRONEOUS IDEAS WITH REGARD TO SORROW FOR SIN. Continue reading

God’s lovingkindness and tender mercies

As I was going over some memory verses this morning, I (finally) saw a connection which I hadn’t seen until this morning:

Ps. 103:4 Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, (NKJV)

Ps. 144:2 My lovingkindness and my fortress,
My high tower and my deliverer,
My shield and the One in whom I take refuge,
Who subdues my people under me. (NKJV)

God not only crowns me with lovingkindness (ESV: steadfast love)–not to mention tender mercies (ESV: compassion)–in 103:4, He is my lovingkindness in 144:2! And in order to bless me eternally, He sent Jesus, who wore a crown of thorns and died in my place. Words fail me.

Spurgeon, in his Treasury of David, wrote this about Ps. 103:4b:

Who crowneth thee with loving kindness and tender mercies. Our Lord does nothing by halves, he will not stay his hand till he has gone to the uttermost with his people. Cleansing, healing, redemption, are not enough, he must needs make them kings and crown them, and the crown Continue reading

More on memory…

I wrote post a while back about my memory, wondering why I remember useless things and not important things.

It turns out Spurgeon had something to say about memory:

I believe that the fall crushed man entirely, albeit, when it rolled like an avalanche upon the mighty temple of human nature, some shafts were still left undestroyed, and amidst the ruins you find here and there, a flute, a pedestal, a cornice, a column, not quite broken, yet the entire structure fell, and its most glorious relics are fallen ones, levelled in the dust. The whole of man is defaced. Look at our memory; is it not true that the memory is fallen? I can recollect evil things far better than those which savor of piety. I hear a ribald song; that music of hell shall jar in my ear when gray hairs shall be upon my head. I hear a note of holy praise; alas! it is forgotten! For memory graspeth with an iron hand ill things, but the good she holdeth with feeble fingers. She suffereth the glorious timbers from the forest of Lebanon to swim down the stream of oblivion, but she stoppeth all the draff that floateth from the foul city of Sodom. She will retain evil, she will lose good. Memory is fallen.

From The Carnal Mind Enmity Against God.

It’s obviously not an excuse – but it does help explain things!

He who believes and is baptized will be saved…

I had forgotten about this verse (Mark 16:16).

I recently picked up where I left off in my collection of Spurgeon’s sermons, and was initially surprised to read the following:

Measure me by the articles of the Church of England, and I will not stand second to any man under heaven’s blue sky in preaching the gospel contained in them; for if there be an excellent epitome of the gospel, it is to be found in the articles of the Church of England. Let me show you that you have not been hearing strange doctrine. Here is the 9th article, upon Original or Birth Sin: “Original Sin standeth not in the following of Adam; (as the Pelagians do vainly talk); but it is the fault and corruption of the nature of every man, that naturally is engendered of the offspring of Adam; whereby man is very far gone from original righteousness, and is of his own nature inclined to evil, so that the flesh lusteth always contrary to the spirit; and, therefore, in every person born into this world, it deserveth God’s wrath and damnation. And this infection of nature doth remain, yea, in them that are regenerated; whereby the lust of the flesh, called in the Greek, phronema sarkos, which some do expound the wisdom, some sensuality, some the affection, some the desire, of the flesh, is not subject to the Law of God. And although there is no condemnation for them that believe and are baptized, yet the apostle doth confess, that concupiscence and lust hath of itself the nature of sin.” I want nothing more. Will any one who believes in the Prayer Book dissent from the doctrine that “the carnal mind is enmity against God?”

(From The Carnal Mind Enmity Against God.)

Continue reading

The fool has said in his heart…

I’m working my way through a collection of Spurgeon’s sermons (at least 150-200 of them) on my PDA. In “The Carnal Mind Enmity Against God”, sermon #20 (which you can find here), I ran across this, which I hadn’t heard before:

That passage in the Psalms, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God,” is wrongly translated. It should be, “The fool hath said in his heart, no God.“ The fool does not say in his heart there is no God, for he knows there is a God; but he says, “No God—I don’t want any; I wish there were none.”

He goes on to say that this proves that the carnal mind is enmity against God – for wishing someone to not be is equivalent to wishing them to be dead.

But what really got my attention was the part about the Psalm 14:1 being mistranslated. I checked all my favorite translations, and they all translate it the same way. So I looked up Spurgeon’s full treatment of the Psalm in The Treasury of David (here), where he indeed gives some more information:

It is not merely the wish of the sinner’s corrupt nature, and the hope of his rebellious heart, but he manages after a fashion to bring himself to assert it, and at certain seasons he thinks that he believes it. It is a solemn reflection that some who worship God with their lips may in their hearts be saying, “no God.” It is worthy of observation that he does not say there is no Jehovah, but there is no Elohim; Deity in the abstract is not so much the object of attack, as the covenant, personal, ruling and governing presence of God in the world. God as ruler, lawgiver, worker, Saviour, is the butt at which the arrows of human wrath are shot. How impotent the malice! How mad the rage which raves and foams against Him in whom we live and move and have our being! How horrible the insanity which leads a man who owes his all to God to cry out, “No God”! How terrible the depravity which makes the whole race adopt this as their hearts desire, “no God!”

All this puts an entirely different complexion on the verse.

Previously, I thought this verse didn’t apply to me. Certainly some verses in Proverbs, describing the fool, have applied to me in the past, but I thought I was in the clear on this one. But if I ask myself if I’ve ever wanted God, in His role as righteous and just judge, to overlook my sin – particularly when I was mired in it at any given time, I’d have to say that I have. How is that different from the fool as described above?

It isn’t.

That’s heavy.

(If there are any Hebrew scholars out there, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this mistranslation issue.)

My follow-up post: The fool has said in his heart, redux.