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Monday, November 28, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his father (on pastoral ministry, college, preaching, and other matters), February 24, 1852



CAMBRIDGE, Feb. 24, 1852.


MY DEAR FATHER,—Mr. Angus, the tutor of Stepney College, preached for us on Sunday, Feb.10. Being at my own place, I had no opportunity of seeing him, and was very surprised, when, on Monday, I was told that he wanted to see me. I assure you, I never mentioned myself to him, nor to anyone,—this came quite unexpectedly. I suppose the deacons of our church, hearing of my doings at Waterbeach, had thought right to mention me to him.

Well, I went to the place of meeting; but, by a very singular occurrence, we missed each other; he waited in the parlor, while I was shown into the drawing-room, and the servant forgot to tell him I had come. As he was going to. London, and could not wait, he wrote the enclosed.

I have waited thus long because (1) I wanted to get a little more to tell you; (2) I do not want to appear to desire to go to College at' your expense. I do not wish to go until I can pay for it with my own money, or until friends offer to help, because I do not want to burden you. It is said by almost all friends that I ought to go to College. I have no very great desire for it; in fact, none at all. Yet I have made it a matter of prayer, and I trust, yea, I am confident, God will ' guide me.

Of course, you are my only earthly director and guide in these matters; your judgment always has been best; you must know best. But perhaps you will allow me just to state my own opinion, not because I shall trust in it, but only that you may see my inclination. I think, then, (with all deference to you,) that I had better not go to College yet, at least not just now, for—1. Whatever advantages are to be derived from such a course of study, I shall be more able to improve when my powers are more developed than they are at present. When I know more, I shall be more able to learn.

2. Providence has thrown me into a great sphere of usefulness,—a congregation of often 450, a loving and praying church, and an awakened audience. Many already own that the preaching has been with power from Heaven. Now, ought I to leave them? 3. In a few years' time, I hope to improve my financial position so as to be at no expense to you, or at least not for all. I should not like to know that you were burdening yourself for me. I should love to work my own way as much as possible. I know you like this feeling.

4. I am not uneducated. I have many opportunities of improvement now; all I want is more time; but even that, Mr. Leeding would give me, if it were so arranged. I have plenty of practice; and do we not learn to preach by preaching? You know what my style is. I fancy it is not very College-like.

Let it be never so bad, God has blessed it, and I believe He will yet more. All I do right, He does in me, and the might is of Him. I am now well off; I think as well off as anyone of my age, and I am sure quite as happy. If I were in need I think the people might be able to raise more for me. Now, shall I throw myself out, and trust to Providence as to whether I shall ever get another place as soon as I leave College? 5. But, no; I have said enough,—you are to judge, not I. I leave it to God and yourself, but, still, I should like you to decide in this way. Of course, I have a will, and you now know it; but I say "Not mine, but your will, and God's will." I have just acknowledged the letter, and said that I could make no reply until I had consulted my friends. I think it might be as well, if you think so, too, to let Mr. Angus know as much as is right of my present position, that he may be favorable toward me at any future time ....


I hope you will excuse my scrawl, for, believe me, I am fully employed.


Last night, I thought of writing; but was called out to see a dying man, and I thought I dare not refuse. The people at W. would not like to get even a hint of my leaving them. I do not know why they love me, but they do; it is the Lord's doing.


Give my love, and many thanks to dear Mother, Archer, and sisters. If at any time you think a letter from me would be useful, just hint as much, and I will write one. May God keep me, in every place, every evil, and dwell with you, and abide with you forever, and with my best love, I am, Dear Father, Your affectionate son, CHARLES.


HT: Spurgeon Archive

Monday, November 21, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his father (on pastoral ministry, books, and other matters), December 31, 1851




CAMBRIDGE, Dec. 31, 1851.


MY DEAR FATHER,—Your Christmas letter was quite as welcome to me as (mine was) to you—no good action is ever forgotten. I was at Waterbeach staying among my people, and so did not receive your letter till my return. I preached twice on Christmas (day) to crammed congregations,' and again on Sunday quite as full. The Lord give me favor in the eyes of the people; they come for miles, and are wondrously attentive. I am invited (to preach at Waterbeach) for six months. My reputation in Cambridge is rather great.

This letter from Mr. Smith is an honor. I have now more money for books.

When I wrote my essay on my knees in the little room upstairs, I solemnly vowed to give two tithes of anything I might gain by it to the Lord's cause.

I have written, the money is come .... My MS. will arrive here shortly.


Now, if you wish, I will send you £... (five-sixths of the amount received), as a little present to you and dear Mother—that shall be exactly as you please—I do not know yet how much I am to pay Mr. Leeding. I have enough. Mr. L. has given me a five-pound note, which I shall not touch except for clothes. I mean to keep that money only for clothes; what I earn on Sundays is my own, for books, expenses, etc. I hope I am sparing, but I have bought several books, which I could not do without. This week I have purchased a good Septuagint, which is a Greek translation of the Old Testament; you will see it mentioned by commentators. This I did for two reasons—1. To improve my Greek. 2. To assist me in studying the Bible.


I got it in two volumes, unbound, for 12s. 6d.—at that price it is reckoned exceedingly cheap.


Now and then you must give me leave to preach three times, not often. I have done so about four times, I was not at all tired. I shall never do so if I have had a hard day. When I feel myself in tune and not at all tired, I may do so; but only now and then. I must say, however, I always get the best congregation in the evening, or at least just as good, for sometimes it is best all day; and you would not have me give up so good a place. I have prayed earnestly that prosperity and fame may not injure me, and I believe strength will be equal to my day. More than one in Waterbeach have declared themselves on the Lord's side—the church is praying hard, and they seem very united.

I take every opportunity of improving myself, and seize every means of improvement. I have lately attended three lectures in the Town Hall to get information; I trust I do.


(The conclusion of the letter is missing.)


HT:  Spurgeon Archive

Monday, November 14, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his father (on pastoral ministry, trials, sanctification and other matters), October 15, 1851








CAMBRIDGE, October 15, 1851.


MY DEAR FATHER,—I received your most welcome note, and beg pardon if you think me negligent in returning thanks. I have been busily employed every Lord's-day; not at home once yet, nor do I expect to be this year. Last Sunday, I went to a place called Waterbeach, where there is an old-established Church, but not able to support a minister. I have engaged to supply to the end of the month. They had, for twenty years, a minister who went over from Cambridge in the same way as you go to Toilesbury. After that, they tried to have a minister; but as they could not keep him, he has left, and they will have to do as they used to do. There is rail there and back, and it is only six miles.

I am glad you have such good congregations. I feel no doubt there is a great work doing there ;rathe fields are ripe unto the harvest, the seed you have sown has yielded plenty of green, let us hope there will be abundance of wheat. Give my love to dear Mother; you have indeed had trials. I always like to see how you bear them. I think I shall never forget that time when Mother and all were so ill. How you were supported and How cheerful you were! You said, in a letter to me,—When troubles, like a gloomy cloud, Have gathered thick, and thundered loud, He near my side has always stood; His lovingkindness, O how good!" I trust that you are all well, and that the clouds are blown away. I am quite well, I am happy to say. Where is Aunt? It is four months since I have heard anything from her, or about her. We have no settled minister yet, nor do we expect any. I thank you much for your sermon; it will just do for me. 


How greatly must I admire the love that could choose me to speak the gospel, and to be the happy recipient of it! I trust my greatest concern is to grow in grace, and to go onward in the blessed course. I feel jealous lest my motive should change, fearing lest I should be my own servant instead of the Lord's. How soon may we turn aside without knowing it, and begin to seek objects below the sacred office! Mr. and Mrs. L. are well, and send their respects. Grandfather has asked me to go to Srambourne, but I cannot afford to go his way. With love to you, dear Father, and all at home, I am.


Your affectionate son, CHARLES H. SPURGEON CAMBRIDGE, Dec. 31, 1851



HT: Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A.W. Pink: Chosen To Salvation



"But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth"  2 Thessalonians 2:13



There are three things here which deserve special attention. First, the fact that we are expressly told that God's elect are "chosen to salvation": Language could not be more explicit. How summarily do these words dispose of the sophistries and equivocations of all who would make election refer to nothing but external privileges or rank in service! It is to "salvation" itself that God has chosen us. Second, we are warned here that election unto salvation does not disregard the use of appropriate means: salvation is reached through "sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth" It is not true that because God has chosen a certain one to salvation that he will be saved willy-nilly, whether he believes or not: nowhere do the Scriptures so represent it. The same God who "chose unto salvation", decreed that His purpose should be realized through the work of the spirit and belief of the truth. Third, that God has chosen us unto salvation is a profound cause for fervent praise. Note how strongly the apostle express this - "we are bound to give thanks always to God for you. brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation", etc. Instead of shrinking back in horror from the doctrine of predestination, the believer, when he sees this blessed truth as it is unfolded in the Word, discovers a ground for gratitude and thanksgiving such as nothing else affords, save the unspeakable gift of the Redeemer Himself.

HT:  PB Ministries

Monday, November 7, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his father (on Christ's sufficiency, sin and other matters), May 15, 1851



CAMBRIDGE, May 15, '51


MY DEAR FATHER,—My choice of return home is easily made. I hope very much you will be so kind as to let me go to the Exhibition. Mr. C., who was at Mr. Lewis's, has just called to see me .... I am going to his house to tea, he lodges with Mr. R.  I guess I feel no mercy for him; I mean Mr. R.; a cap and gown are poor things to sell one's principles for. You have not written to Mr. Leering.

Where is Mr. Walker? I cannot write, for I know nothing of his whereabouts. We have no minister yet. We have had some excellent supplies. I am very comfortable, and I may say, happy. Were it not for my vile heart, I might rejoice. I am the least of God's people, and I am sure I am the worst. But yet I am one; I believe in Jesus and trust in Him, and this, I take it, is the evidence of life. I can fall into His arms, though I cannot rest on my own merits, for I have none. Jesus and Jesus alone is my defense. I know you pray for me. I think I have felt the answer to your earnest entreaties. Sometimes, I pour my heart out sweetly, freely; at another time, I can hardly bring up a petition, What a contrast, mixture, paradox I am! I hope you and dear Mother are well. Love to all. 


Your affectionate son, CHARLES.



HT:  Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A.W. Pink: Evangelical Preaching



The question which is before us for consideration and (attempted) elucidation really concerns the preacher's efforts to "win souls" (Prov. 11:30), and as to how far the Word warrants him going towards the realization of his longings to see sinners converted under his ministry. And here, it seems to the writer, there are two extremes to be guarded against. On the one hand, we believe those preachers come short of discharging their duties who rest content with simply setting forth in an abstract and impersonal way what are termed "the Doctrines of Grace'. To say, "I have faithfully declared all the counsel of God and now I must leave results with him", sounds very pious, but it leaves the way open for several serious questions. It is perfectly true that "results" rest entirely with God, for he alone "giveth the increase' (1 Cor. 3:7). But, have we declared all the counsel of God when we have fully expounded the "five points" of Calvinism? We think not. The preacher is something more than a human gramophone, mechanically repeating a scriptural formula.

Of the forerunner of Christ it is said that he was "A burning and a shining light" (John 5:3). He was "the voice of one crying in the wilderness". No correct but cold formalist was he. Of our Saviour it is recorded that he wept over Jerusalem because her children would not come to him. No heartless fatalist was he. The great apostle to the Gentiles wrote, "Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men" (2 Cor. 5:11). Do you do this, brother preacher? Query: Were Paul on earth today saying, "We persuade men" would his orthodoxy be suspected? Again; he announced, "Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us; we pray (plead) you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God" (2 Cor. 5:20). Do these methods characterize our evangelical ministrations? Surely we all have need to pray earnestly for more devotion to Christ, more love for souls, more fervour and power in preaching the gospel.

HT:  PB Ministries

Monday, October 31, 2011

YouTube: Here I Stand, Martin Luther (B/W Movie)




Martin Luther - The Ninety-Five Theses






Disputation of Doctor Martin Luther
on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences
by Dr. Martin Luther (1517)
Published in:
Works of Martin Luther:
Adolph Spaeth, L.D. Reed, Henry Eyster Jacobs, et Al., Trans. & Eds.
(Philadelphia: A. J. Holman Company, 1915), Vol.1, pp. 29-38

_______________
Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and Lecturer in Ordinary on the same at that place. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may do so by letter.

In the Name our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
    1. Our Lord and Master Jesus Christ, when He said Poenitentiam agite, willed that the whole life of believers should be repentance. 2. This word cannot be understood to mean sacramental penance, i.e., confession and satisfaction, which is administered by the priests. 3. Yet it means not inward repentance only; nay, there is no inward repentance which does not outwardly work divers mortifications of the flesh. 4. The penalty [of sin], therefore, continues so long as hatred of self continues; for this is the true inward repentance, and continues until our entrance into the kingdom of heaven. 5. The pope does not intend to remit, and cannot remit any penalties other than those which he has imposed either by his own authority or by that of the Canons. 6. The pope cannot remit any guilt, except by declaring that it has been remitted by God and by assenting to God's remission; though, to be sure, he may grant remission in cases reserved to his judgment. If his right to grant remission in such cases were despised, the guilt would remain entirely unforgiven. 7. God remits guilt to no one whom He does not, at the same time, humble in all things and bring into subjection to His vicar, the priest. 8. The penitential canons are imposed only on the living, and, according to them, nothing should be imposed on the dying. 9. Therefore the Holy Spirit in the pope is kind to us, because in his decrees he always makes exception of the article of death and of necessity. 10. Ignorant and wicked are the doings of those priests who, in the case of the dying, reserve canonical penances for purgatory. 11. This changing of the canonical penalty to the penalty of purgatory is quite evidently one of the tares that were sown while the bishops slept. 12. In former times the canonical penalties were imposed not after, but before absolution, as tests of true contrition. 13. The dying are freed by death from all penalties; they are already dead to canonical rules, and have a right to be released from them. 14. The imperfect health [of soul], that is to say, the imperfect love, of the dying brings with it, of necessity, great fear; and the smaller the love, the greater is the fear. 15. This fear and horror is sufficient of itself alone (to say nothing of other things) to constitute the penalty of purgatory, since it is very near to the horror of despair. 16. Hell, purgatory, and heaven seem to differ as do despair, almost-despair, and the assurance of safety. 17. With souls in purgatory it seems necessary that horror should grow less and love increase. 18. It seems unproved, either by reason or Scripture, that they are outside the state of merit, that is to say, of increasing love. 19. Again, it seems unproved that they, or at least that all of them, are certain or assured of their own blessedness, though we may be quite certain of it. 20. Therefore by "full remission of all penalties" the pope means not actually "of all," but only of those imposed by himself. 21. Therefore those preachers of indulgences are in error, who say that by the pope's indulgences a man is freed from every penalty, and saved; 22. Whereas he remits to souls in purgatory no penalty which, according to the canons, they would have had to pay in this life. 23. If it is at all possible to grant to any one the remission of all penalties whatsoever, it is certain that this remission can be granted only to the most perfect, that is, to the very fewest. 24. It must needs be, therefore, that the greater part of the people are deceived by that indiscriminate and highsounding promise of release from penalty. 25. The power which the pope has, in a general way, over purgatory, is just like the power which any bishop or curate has, in a special way, within his own diocese or parish. 26. The pope does well when he grants remission to souls [in purgatory], not by the power of the keys (which he does not possess), but by way of intercession. 27. They preach man who say that so soon as the penny jingles into the money-box, the soul flies out [of purgatory]. 28. It is certain that when the penny jingles into the money-box, gain and avarice can be increased, but the result of the intercession of the Church is in the power of God alone. 29. Who knows whether all the souls in purgatory wish to be bought out of it, as in the legend of Sts. Severinus and Paschal. 30. No one is sure that his own contrition is sincere; much less that he has attained full remission. 31. Rare as is the man that is truly penitent, so rare is also the man who truly buys indulgences, i.e., such men are most rare. 32. They will be condemned eternally, together with their teachers, who believe themselves sure of their salvation because they have letters of pardon. 33. Men must be on their guard against those who say that the pope's pardons are that inestimable gift of God by which man is reconciled to Him; 34. For these "graces of pardon" concern only the penalties of sacramental satisfaction, and these are appointed by man. 35. They preach no Christian doctrine who teach that contrition is not necessary in those who intend to buy souls out of purgatory or to buy confessionalia. 36. Every truly repentant Christian has a right to full remission of penalty and guilt, even without letters of pardon. 37. Every true Christian, whether living or dead, has part in all the blessings of Christ and the Church; and this is granted him by God, even without letters of pardon. 38. Nevertheless, the remission and participation [in the blessings of the Church] which are granted by the pope are in no way to be despised, for they are, as I have said, the declaration of divine remission. 39. It is most difficult, even for the very keenest theologians, at one and the same time to commend to the people the abundance of pardons and [the need of] true contrition. 40. True contrition seeks and loves penalties, but liberal pardons only relax penalties and cause them to be hated, or at least, furnish an occasion [for hating them]. 41. Apostolic pardons are to be preached with caution, lest the people may falsely think them preferable to other good works of love. 42. Christians are to be taught that the pope does not intend the buying of pardons to be compared in any way to works of mercy. 43. Christians are to be taught that he who gives to the poor or lends to the needy does a better work than buying pardons; 44. Because love grows by works of love, and man becomes better; but by pardons man does not grow better, only more free from penalty. 45. Christians are to be taught that he who sees a man in need, and passes him by, and gives [his money] for pardons, purchases not the indulgences of the pope, but the indignation of God. 46. Christians are to be taught that unless they have more than they need, they are bound to keep back what is necessary for their own families, and by no means to squander it on pardons. 47. Christians are to be taught that the buying of pardons is a matter of free will, and not of commandment. 48. Christians are to be taught that the pope, in granting pardons, needs, and therefore desires, their devout prayer for him more than the money they bring. 49. Christians are to be taught that the pope's pardons are useful, if they do not put their trust in them; but altogether harmful, if through them they lose their fear of God. 50. Christians are to be taught that if the pope knew the exactions of the pardon-preachers, he would rather that St. Peter's church should go to ashes, than that it should be built up with the skin, flesh and bones of his sheep. 51. Christians are to be taught that it would be the pope's wish, as it is his duty, to give of his own money to very many of those from whom certain hawkers of pardons cajole money, even though the church of St. Peter might have to be sold. 52. The assurance of salvation by letters of pardon is vain, even though the commissary, nay, even though the pope himself, were to stake his soul upon it. 53. They are enemies of Christ and of the pope, who bid the Word of God be altogether silent in some Churches, in order that pardons may be preached in others. 54. Injury is done the Word of God when, in the same sermon, an equal or a longer time is spent on pardons than on this Word. 55. It must be the intention of the pope that if pardons, which are a very small thing, are celebrated with one bell, with single processions and ceremonies, then the Gospel, which is the very greatest thing, should be preached with a hundred bells, a hundred processions, a hundred ceremonies. 56. The "treasures of the Church," out of which the pope. grants indulgences, are not sufficiently named or known among the people of Christ. 57. That they are not temporal treasures is certainly evident, for many of the vendors do not pour out such treasures so easily, but only gather them. 58. Nor are they the merits of Christ and the Saints, for even without the pope, these always work grace for the inner man, and the cross, death, and hell for the outward man. 59. St. Lawrence said that the treasures of the Church were the Church's poor, but he spoke according to the usage of the word in his own time. 60. Without rashness we say that the keys of the Church, given by Christ's merit, are that treasure; 61. For it is clear that for the remission of penalties and of reserved cases, the power of the pope is of itself sufficient. 62. The true treasure of the Church is the Most Holy Gospel of the glory and the grace of God. 63. But this treasure is naturally most odious, for it makes the first to be last. 64. On the other hand, the treasure of indulgences is naturally most acceptable, for it makes the last to be first. 65. Therefore the treasures of the Gospel are nets with which they formerly were wont to fish for men of riches. 66. The treasures of the indulgences are nets with which they now fish for the riches of men. 67. The indulgences which the preachers cry as the "greatest graces" are known to be truly such, in so far as they promote gain. 68. Yet they are in truth the very smallest graces compared with the grace of God and the piety of the Cross. 69. Bishops and curates are bound to admit the commissaries of apostolic pardons, with all reverence. 70. But still more are they bound to strain all their eyes and attend with all their ears, lest these men preach their own dreams instead of the commission of the pope. 71. He who speaks against the truth of apostolic pardons, let him be anathema and accursed! 72. But he who guards against the lust and license of the pardon-preachers, let him be blessed! 73. The pope justly thunders against those who, by any art, contrive the injury of the traffic in pardons. 74. But much more does he intend to thunder against those who use the pretext of pardons to contrive the injury of holy love and truth. 75. To think the papal pardons so great that they could absolve a man even if he had committed an impossible sin and violated the Mother of God -- this is madness. 76. We say, on the contrary, that the papal pardons are not able to remove the very least of venial sins, so far as its guilt is concerned. 77. It is said that even St. Peter, if he were now Pope, could not bestow greater graces; this is blasphemy against St. Peter and against the pope. 78. We say, on the contrary, that even the present pope, and any pope at all, has greater graces at his disposal; to wit, the Gospel, powers, gifts of healing, etc., as it is written in I. Corinthians xii. 79. To say that the cross, emblazoned with the papal arms, which is set up [by the preachers of indulgences], is of equal worth with the Cross of Christ, is blasphemy. 80. The bishops, curates and theologians who allow such talk to be spread among the people, will have an account to render. 81. This unbridled preaching of pardons makes it no easy matter, even for learned men, to rescue the reverence due to the pope from slander, or even from the shrewd questionings of the laity. 82. To wit: -- "Why does not the pope empty purgatory, for the sake of holy love and of the dire need of the souls that are there, if he redeems an infinite number of souls for the sake of miserable money with which to build a Church? The former reasons would be most just; the latter is most trivial." 83. Again: -- "Why are mortuary and anniversary masses for the dead continued, and why does he not return or permit the withdrawal of the endowments founded on their behalf, since it is wrong to pray for the redeemed?" 84. Again: -- "What is this new piety of God and the pope, that for money they allow a man who is impious and their enemy to buy out of purgatory the pious soul of a friend of God, and do not rather, because of that pious and beloved soul's own need, free it for pure love's sake?" 85. Again: -- "Why are the penitential canons long since in actual fact and through disuse abrogated and dead, now satisfied by the granting of indulgences, as though they were still alive and in force?" 86. Again: -- "Why does not the pope, whose wealth is to-day greater than the riches of the richest, build just this one church of St. Peter with his own money, rather than with the money of poor believers?" 87. Again: -- "What is it that the pope remits, and what participation does he grant to those who, by perfect contrition, have a right to full remission and participation?" 88. Again: -- "What greater blessing could come to the Church than if the pope were to do a hundred times a day what he now does once, and bestow on every believer these remissions and participations?" 89. "Since the pope, by his pardons, seeks the salvation of souls rather than money, why does he suspend the indulgences and pardons granted heretofore, since these have equal efficacy?" 90. To repress these arguments and scruples of the laity by force alone, and not to resolve them by giving reasons, is to expose the Church and the pope to the ridicule of their enemies, and to make Christians unhappy. 91. If, therefore, pardons were preached according to the spirit and mind of the pope, all these doubts would be readily resolved; nay, they would not exist. 92. Away, then, with all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, "Peace, peace," and there is no peace! 93. Blessed be all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, "Cross, cross," and there is no cross! 94. Christians are to be exhorted that they be diligent in following Christ, their Head, through penalties, deaths, and hell; 95. And thus be confident of entering into heaven rather through many tribulations, than through the assurance of peace. HT: Project Wittenberg

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his mother (on the providences of God, sovereignty of God, the love of God, and other matters), May 3, 1851




CAMBRIDGE, May 3, 1851.


MY DEAR MOTHER,—Many happy returns of this day, I pray for you. Another year's journey of the vast howling wilderness have you gone; you have leaned on the arm of your Beloved, and are now nearer the gates of bliss. Happy as the year has been, I trust, to you, yet I do not think you would wish to traverse it over again, or to go back one step of the way. Glorious, wondrous, has been the grace shown to all of us, as members of the mystical body of Christ, in preservation, restraint from sin, constraint to holiness, and perseverance in the Christian state. What shall a babe say to a mother in Israel? And yet, if I might speak, I would say, "Take this year's mercies as earnests of next year's blessings." The God who has kept you so long, you may rest assured will never leave you. If He had not meant to do good continually to you, He would not have done it at all. His love in time past, in the past year, forbids you—"FORBIDS YOU to think, He'll leave you at last in trouble to sink." The rapturous moments of enjoyment, the hallowed hours of communion, the blest days of sunshine in His presence, are pledges of sure, certain, infallible glory. Mark the providences of this year; how clearly have you seen His hand in things which others esteem chance! God, who has moved the world, has exercised His own vast heart and thought for you. All your life, your spiritual life, all things have worked together for good; nothing has gone wrong, for God has directed, controlled all. "Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from the Lord, and my judgment is passed over from my God?" He who counts the hairs of our heads, and keeps us as the apple of His eye, has not forgotten you, but still loves you with an everlasting love. The mountains have not departed yet, nor the hills been removed, and till then we may have confidence that we, His own people, are secure.

But I am writing what to you are everyday meditations. Well, dear Mother, you know where this comes from, only from your boy. Let us reioice together; your prayers for us I know will be answered, they are sure to be, for God has said so. May God give you a feast,mhoney, wine, milk,mmay you be satisfied with marrow and fatness, satiated with the dainties and luxuries of religion, and rejoice exceedingly in the Lord [I remember that, a year ago, I publicly professed the name of Jesus by baptism. Pray for me, that I may not dishonor my profession, and break my solemn vow. While I look back through the year, I can see a Great Exhibition of love and grace to me, more marvellous than even that now opened in Hyde Park. Give my love to dear Father, Archer, and sisters; and accept the same doubly. I trust all are well. I have nothing the matter with me. Mr. and Mrs. L. desire respects. Many thanks for the postal order.


I am, Your affectionate son, CHARLES H. SPURGEON.

HT:  Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A.W. Pink: The god of This Generation



The "god" of this twentieth century no more resembles the Supreme Sovereign of Holy Writ than does the dim flickering of a candle the glory of the mid-day sun. The god who is now talked about in the average pulpit, spoken of in the ordinary Sunday School, mentioned in most of the religious literature of the day, and preached in most of the so-called Bible conferences is a figment of human imagination, an invention of over-emotional sentimentality.

The heathen outside the pale of Christendom form gods out of wood and stone, while the millions of heathen inside Christendom manufacture a god out of their own carnal minds. In reality, they are but atheists; FOR THERE IS NO OTHER POSSIBLE ALTERNATIVE BETWEEN AN ABSOLUTE SUPREME GOD AND NO GOD AT ALL! A "god" whose will is resisted, whose designs are frustrated, and whose purpose is checkmated, possesses no title to Deity, and SO FAR FROM BEING A FIT OBJECT OF WORSHIP, MERITS NOUGHT BUT CONTEMPT.

HT:  PB Ministries

Monday, October 24, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his mother (on prayer, suffering and other matters), November 12, 1850



CAMBRIDGE, Nov. 12, 185O.

MY DEAR MOTHER,—I write to acknowledge and thank you for a box from home. Dear Mother, you are indeed very kind; how I ought to bless God for such parents! Mr. Leeding is very much obliged to you for the ham, and Mr.. Spurgeon, your son, desires to thank you for a nice cake, apples, etc. I wish you had not laid your hand on the Key to the Bible; for, if I had had it, I should have been delighted to have given it to my dear Mother. Perhaps I may take the credit for it now.... We have no minister yet. Mr. Leeding said, the other morning, "I need not ask you how you are; you are always well, like some tree." I have been several times to see a lady in this town, mother of one of our boys .... I have reason to think her an eminent Christian. She is all day in pain, never goes out, and can hardly sleep. She made me think of your rheumatics. She has four little children. They are rich; her husband is a good, kind sort of man, but he is not, I fear, a renewed man. She has wave upon wave. She has no one to speak to. I think it a privilege to talk to any of God's people, to comfort and console them. We do not know how many need our prayers.

My best love, dear Mother, to you and Father.

Your affectionate son, CHARLES.


HT:  Spurgeon Archives

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

YouTube: A 180 on Abortion with guests Tony Miano and Ray Comfort (Lane Chaplin interviews Tony Miano and Ray Comfort on 180 Movie, Ray Comfort's New Documentary on Abortion)

Bible Q&A with John MacArthur: The Simple Gospel (Acts 16)

A.W. Pink: That Worthy Name



"Yours in the name of Jesus." How many who owe their all, both for time and eternity, to the peerless One, refer thus to Him who was "God manifest in the flesh" (1 Tim. 3:16). It is "Jesus" this and "Jesus" that. But is it becoming for worms of the dust, for sinners, even for sinners saved by grace, to thus speak of Him? Jesus is the Lord of Glory, and surely it is due the dignity and majesty of His person that this be recognized and owned, even in our references to Him in common speech. Those who despise and reject the Saviour speak of Him as "The carpenter," "The Nazarene," as "Jesus." But should those who have been given an "understanding, that we may know Him that is true" (1 John 5:20) ignore His Lordship? In a word, can we who have been redeemed by His precious blood do less than confess Him as the "Lord Jesus Christ?"

Our modern hymns are largely responsible for the dishonor that is now so generally cast upon "That Worthy Name." And we cannot but raise our voices in loud protest against much of the trash which masquerades under the name of hymns. "There's not a friend like the lowly Jesus" is utterly erroneous and highly akin to blasphemy. There is not a "lowly" Jesus today except the one created by the imagination and sentimentality of the moderns. Instead of being "lowly," the Lord Jesus Christ is seated "on the right hand of the Majesty on High" (Heb. 1:3), from whence He will shortly descend in flaming fire to take vengeance on them that know not God and obey not His gospel (2 Thess. 1:7-8).

Above we have said that the apostles never once addressed our Lord simply as "Jesus." Mark, now, how they did refer to the blessed One. "And Peter answered Him and said, LORD, if it be Thou, bid me come unto Thee on the water" (Matthew 14:28). "Then came Peter to Him and said, LORD, how oft shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him?" (Matthew 18:21). "And they were exceeding sorrowful and began everyone of them to say unto Him LORD, is it I?" (Matthew 26:22). "And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, LORD, wilt Thou that we command fire to come down from heaven and consume them" (Luke 9:54). "And they rose up the same hour and returned to Jerusalem and found the eleven gathered together and them that were with them, saying, the LORD is risen indeed" (Luke 24:33-34). "Thomas said unto Him LORD, we know not whither Thou goest" (John 14:5). "Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, it is the LORD" (John 21:7).

HT:  PB Ministries

Monday, October 17, 2011

YouTube: A Friend for Life (A powerful illustration of what sin really wants from you and your life)

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his mother (on fear, sin, the Gospel and other matters), November 12, 1850




CAMBRIDGE, Nov. 12, 185O.



MY DEAR MOTHER,—I have just received the Maidstone Journal, in which you will see an advertisement of Mr. Walker's sale. In one of my late letters to Aunt (having heard you speak of her as somewhat trusting to works), I ventured, as a babe in grace, to touch upon the subject, I trust, with becoming prudence as well as boldness. I then received a letter from Uncle,—a long one, too,—containing much good and even religious advice; of course, speaking as (Oh, how I desire it!) a Christian should speak. Mixed up with it, there was a tincture of naturalism or reason. I have therefore ventured on another letter, and have, I trust, said, though feebly, what a boy should say to a dying Uncle. False fear should never prevent us from being faithful with men walking on the confines of the grave. Could I make religion more the business of my life, how happy should I be I am conscious I do not live up to my duties or my privileges, and did I not feel sure that Jesus will certainly complete what He has begun, I should never think of reaching Heaven; but, by His might, I would look confidently for it.

I have found a little work here. I have spoken twice to the Sunday-school, and am to read an Essay on some subject connected with Sunday-schools at the next meeting of the Teachers' Institute for the town. I only do so just to fill up. I have been driven to it, Mr. Watts and some others having taken their turns. I hope yet, one day, to prove myself no Antinomian, though I confess my daily sins and shortcomings; yet I would not wilfully sin, and I feel some hatred to it. I desire to hate it more. 

I hope you enjoy your health, and that, with dear Father, you have much of the marrow of the gospel as your daily meat. Give my love to all at home, and accept the same for yourself and Father. I am pursuing my studies, though I can say little about progress. I am most happy, and quite well, and hoping to see you before many weeks, I remain, Your most affectionate son, CHARLES. 


HT: Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A.W. Pink: The Holiness of God



Because God is holy, acceptance with Him on the ground of creature-doings is utterly impossible. A fallen creature could sooner create a world than produce that which would meet the approval of infinite Purity. Can darkness dwell with Light? Can the Immaculate One take pleasure with "filthy rags" (Isa. 64:6)? The best that sinful man brings forth is defiled. A corrupt tree cannot bear good fruit. God would deny Himself, vilify His perfections, were He to account as righteous and holy that which is not so in itself; and nothing is so which has the least stain upon it contrary to the nature of God. But blessed be His name, that which His holiness demanded His grace has provided in Christ Jesus our Lord. Every poor sinner who has fled to Him for refuge stands "accepted in the Beloved" (Eph. 1:6). Hallelujah!

It has been well said that "true worship is based upon recognized greatness, and greatness is superlatively seen in Sovereignty, and at no other footstool will men really worship." In the presence of the Divine King upon His throne even the seraphim 'veil their faces.' Divine sovereignty is not the sovereignty of a tyrannical Despot, but the exercised pleasure of One who is infinitely wise and good! Because God is infinitely wise He cannot err, and because He is infinitely righteous He will not do wrong. Here then is the preciousness of this truth. The mere fact itself that God's will is irresistible and irreversible fills me with fear, but once I realize that God wills only that which is good, my heart is made to rejoice. Here then is the final answer to the question (concerning our attitude toward God's sovereignty) - What ought to be our attitude toward the sovereignty of God? The becoming attitude for us to take is that of godly fear, implicit obedience, and unreserved resignation and submission. But not only so: the recognition of the sovereignty of God, and the realization that the Sovereign Himself is my Father, ought to overwhelm the heart and cause me to bow before Him in adoring worship. At all times I must say, "Even so, Father, for so it seemeth good in Thy sight."

HT:  PB Ministries 

Monday, October 10, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his mother (on church membership, sin, assurance of salvation and other matters), October 3, 1850




CAMBRIDGE, October 3, 1850.

MY DEAR MOTHER,—I am generally so slack of news, that I have been ashamed to send a letter with nothing in it. I was last night admitted into membership with this church by dismission from Newmarket. May my future relation with them, whether brief or protracted, be for the glory of Jesus Christ I I am very fond of Mr. Roffe; I like his preaching very much. There is to be a baptizing this evening .... I trust that a year or two of study with Mr.Leecling will be of equal benefit to me with a College education .... I have found a great many Christian friends; last Sunday I had two invitations to tea. I went to the house of Mr. Watts, a coal merchant, and spent the time very happily. We read round with the children, and it seemed just like home-days. I have not had a letter from Starebourne, nor from Aunt, I am quite solitary.

Mr. Roffe preached a delightful sermon from "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help." I trust I can look by faith to the hills, and confidently expect the help. I think I learn more every day of my own natural depravity and love of sin: how stupid should I be if I trusted to my own heart. If my salvation depended upon my continuance in the fervor of devotion, how soon should I perish. How joyful it is to know that Jesus will keep that which I have committed to Him, and that He will at length save every one of His redeemed ones! Give my best love to dear Father, and accept the same yourself. I hope you are both well: give my love to Eliza, Archer, Emily, a kiss to Louisa and Lottie. I thank you for your many prayers; continue yet to plead for me, and may I ever be—Your affectionate son, CHARLES.


HT: Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

YouTube: 180 Movie (Ray Comfort's New Documentary on Abortion)

YouTube: Son of Whom? - Testimony of Son of Sam Serial Killer Now Born Again Christian David Berkowitz (Wretched - TV)

A.W. Pink: Rejoice in the Lord Always, Philippians 4:4




Why should I, who am by nature no different from the careless and godless throngs all around, have been chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world and now blest with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies in Him? Why was I, that once was an alien and a rebel, signaled out for such wondrous favors? Ah, that is something I cannot fathom. Such grace, such love, "passeth knowledge." But if my mind is unable to discern a reason, my heart can express its gratitude in praise and adoration.

But not only should I be grateful to God for His grace toward me in the past, His present dealings will fill me with thanksgivings. What is the force of that word "Rejoice in the Lord alway" (Phil. 4:4)? Mark it is not "Rejoice in the Saviour", but we are to "Rejoice in the Lord", as "Lord", As THE MASTER OF EVERY CIRCUMSTANCE. Need we remind the reader that when the apostle penned these words he was himself a prisoner in the hands of the Roman government. A long course of affliction and suffering lay behind him. Perils on land and perils on sea, hunger and thirst, scourging and stoning, had all been experienced. He had been persecuted by those within the church as well as by those without: the very ones who ought to have stood by him had forsaken him. And still he writes, "Rejoice in the Lord alway" What was the secret of his peace and happiness? Ah! had not this same apostle written, "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose" (Rom. 8:28)? But how did he, and how do we, "know", that all things work together for good?

The answer is, Because all things are under the control of and are being regulated by the Supreme Sovereign, and because He has naught but thoughts of love toward His own, then "all things are so ordered by Him that they are MADE TO MINISTER TO OUR ULTIMATE GOOD. It is for this cause we are to give "thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Eph. 5:20). Yes, give thanks for "all things" for, as it has been well said "Our disappointments are but His appointments." To the one who delights in the sovereignty of God the clouds not only have a 'silver lining' but they are silvern all through, the darkness only serving to offset the light!

HT:  PB Ministires

Monday, October 3, 2011

Bible Q&A with John MacArthur: Bearing Burdens (Galatians 6)

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his father (on communion, prayer, sin, and other matters), September 19, 1850



CAMBRIDGE, 19th Sept., '50. 



MY DEAR FATHER,—I received your kind letter in due time. I joined the Church here at the Lord's table last Ordinance day. I shall write for my dismission; I intended to have done so before. The Baptists are by far the most respectable denomination in Cambridge; there are three Baptist Chapels,—St. Andrew's Street, where we attend, Zion Chapel, and Eden Chapel. There is a very fine Wesleyan Chapel and some others. I teach in the Sunday-school all the afternoon. Mr. Leeding takes the morning work. Last Sabbath-day we had a funeral sermon from Hebrews 6:11, 12. We have a prayer-meeting at 7 in the morning, and one after the evening service; they are precious means of grace, I trust, to my soul. How soon would the lamps go out did not our mighty Lord supply fresh oil; and if it were not for His unshaken promise to supply our need out of the fullness of His grace, poor indeed should we be. 

Yes, where Jesus comes, He comes to reign; how I wish He would reign more in my heart; then I might hope that every atom of self, self-confidence, and self-righteousness, would be swept out of my soul. I am sure I long for the time when all evil affections, corrupt desires, and rebellious, doubting thoughts shall be overcome, and completely crushed beneath the Prince's feet, and my whole soul be made pure and holy. But so long as I am encaged within this house of clay, I know they will lurk about, and I must have hard fighting though the victory by grace is sure.

Praying is the best fighting; nothing else will keep them down.

I have written a letter to grandfather; I am sorry he is so poorly. He wants the promises now, and why may not young and old live upon them? They are the bread-corn of Heaven, the meat of the Kingdom; and who that has once tasted them will turn to eat husks without any sweetness and comfort in them? God's power will keep all His children; while He says to them, "How shall ye who are dead to sin live any longer therein?" I feel persuaded that I shall never fathom the depths of my own natural depravity, nor climb to the tops of the mountains of God's eternal love. I feel constrained day by day to fall flat down upon the promises, and leave my soul in Jesu's keeping. It is He that makes my feet move even in the slow obedience which marks them at present, and every attainment of grace must come from Him. I would go forth by prayer, like the Israelites, to gather up this Heavenly manna, and live upon free-grace.

Add to all your great kindness and love to me, through my life, a constant remembrance of me in your prayers. I thank you for those petitions which you and dear Mother have so often sent to the mercy-seat for me. Give my love to my sisters and brother, and accept the same for yourself and dear Mother. Hoping you are all quite well.

I remain, Your obedient, affectionate son, CHARLES SPURGEON.


HT: Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A.W. Pink: What Ought to be Our Attitude Toward the Sovereignty of God?



It has been well said that "true worship is based upon recognized greatness, and greatness is superlatively seen in Sovereignty, and at no other footstool will men really worship." In the presence of the Divine King upon His throne even the seraphim 'veil their faces.' Divine sovereignty is not the sovereignty of a tyrannical Despot, but the exercised pleasure of One who is infinitely wise and good! Because God is infinitely wise He cannot err, and because He is infinitely righteous He will not do wrong. Here then is the preciousness of this truth. The mere fact itself that God's will is irresistible and irreversible fills me with fear, but once I realize that God wills only that which is good. My heart is made to rejoice. Here then is the final answer to the question (concerning our attitude toward God's sovereignty)—What ought to be our attitude toward the sovereignty of God? The becoming attitude for us to take is that of godly fear, implicit obedience, and unreserved resignation and submission. But not only so: the recognition of the sovereignty of God, and the realization that the Sovereign Himself is my Father, ought to overwhelm the heart and cause me to bow before Him in adoring worship. At all times I must say, "Even so, Father, for so it seemeth good in Thy sight."

HT:  PB Ministries

Monday, September 26, 2011

Bible Q&A with John MacArthur: No One Comes to Christ . . . Unless (John 6)

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his mother (on church membership, baptism, Baptists, communion, enemies, and other matters), June 11, 1850




NEWMARKET, June 11, 1850


MY DEAR MOTHER,—Many thanks to you for your valuable letter. Your notes are so few and far between, and are such a trouble to you, that one now and then is quite a treasure.

I have had two opportunities of addressing the Sun-day-school children, and have endeavored to do so as a dying being to dying beings. I am bound to Newmarket by holy bonds. I have 70 people whom I regularly visit on Saturday. I do not give a tract, and go away; but I sit down, and endeavor to draw their attention to spiritual realities. I have great reason to believe the Lord is working,—the people are so kind, and so pleased to see me. I cannot bear to leave them. We are so feeble here that the weakest cannot be spared. We have a pretty good attendance at prayer-meetings; but so few praying men, that I am constantly called upon ....

One of our Deacons, Mr.____, is constantly inviting me to his house, he is rather an Arminian; but so are the majority of Newmarket Christians.

Grandfather has written to me; he does not blame me for being a Baptist, but hopes I shall not be one of the tight-laced, strict-communion sort. In that, we are agreed. I certainly think we ought to forget such things in others when we come to the Lord's table. I can, and hope I shall be charitable to unbaptized Christians, though I think they are mistaken. It is not a great matter; men will differ; we ought both to follow our own consciences, and let others do the same. I think the time would be better spent in talking upon vital godliness than in disputing about forms. I trust the Lord is weaning me daily from all self-dependence, and teaching me to look at myself as less than nothing. I know that I am perfectly dead without Him; it is His work; I'm confident that he will accomplish it, and that I shall see the face of my Beloved in His own house in glory.

My enemies are many, and they hate me with cruel hatred, yet with Jehovah Jesus on my side, why should I fear? I will march on in His almighty strength to certain conquest and victory. I am so glad that Sarah, too, is called, that two of us in one household at one time should thus openly profess the Savior's name. We are brother and sister in the Lord; may our Father often give each of us the refreshing visits of His grace! I feel as if I could say with Paul, "Would that I were even accursed, so that my brethren according to the flesh might be saved!" What a joy if God should prove that they are redeemed ones included in the covenant of grace I long to see your face, and let my heart beat with yours, whilst we talk of the glorious things pertaining to eternal life. My best love to you and Father, may the Angel of the covenant dwell with you, and enchant you by the visions of His grace. Love to Eliza, Archer (many happy returns to him}, Emily, Lottie, and Louisa; may they become members of the church in our house. I am very glad you are so well. I am so, but hard at work for the Examination, so allow me to remain, Your most affectionate son, CHARLES.

Master H shall be attended to; be ye always ready for every good work. I have no time, but it shall be done. 


HT:  Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A.W. Pink: The Fear of the Lord is the Beginning of Wisdom



"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom" (Prov. 1:7). Happy the soul that has been awed by a view of God's majesty, that has had a vision of God's awful greatness, His ineffable holiness, His perfect righteousness, His irresistible power, His sovereign grace. Does someone say, "But it is only the unsaved, those outside of Christ, who need to fear God"? Then the sufficient answer is that the saved, those who are in Christ, are admonished to work out their own salvation with "fear and trembling." Time was when it was the general custom to speak of a believer as a "God-fearing man." That such an appellation has become nearly extinct only serves to show whither we have drifted. Nevertheless, it still stands written, "Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him" (Psalm 103:13).


When we speak of godly fear, of course we do not mean a servile fear, such as prevails among the heathen in connection with their gods. No, we mean that spirit which Jehovah is pledged to bless, that spirit to which the prophet referred when he said, "To this man will I (the Lord) look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word" (Isa. 66:2). It was this the apostle had in view when he wrote, "Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king" (I Pet: 2:17). And nothing will foster this godly fear like a recognition of the Sovereign Majesty of God.

HT:  PB Ministries

Monday, September 19, 2011

Spurgeon Monday: The Letters of Charles Spurgeon - Letter from Charles Spurgeon to his mother (on mother's birthday, church membership, baptism, the love of God, and other matters), May 1, 1850




NEWMARKET, May 1, 1850.


MY DEAR MOTHER,—Many very happy returns of your Birthday. In this instance, my wish will certainly be realized, for in Heaven you are sure to have an eternity of happy days. May you, in your coming years, live beneath the sweet smiles of the God of peace; may joy and singing attend your footsteps to a blissful haven of rest and tranquillity! Your birthday will now be doubly memorable, for on the third of May, the boy for whom you have so often prayed, the boy of hopes and fears, your first-born, will join the visible Church of the redeemed on earth, and will bind himself doubly to the Lord his God, by open profession. You, my Mother, have been the great means in God's hand of rendering me what I hope I am. Your kind, warning Sabbath-evening addresses were too deeply settled on my heart to be forgotten. You, by God's blessing, prepared the way for the preached Word, and for that holy book, The Rise and Progress. If I have any courage, if I feel prepared to follow my Savior, not only into the water, but should He call me, even into the fire, I love you as the preacher to my heart of such courage, as my praying, watching Mother. Impossible, I think it is, that I should ever cease to love you, or you to love me, yet not nearly so impossible as that the Lord our Father should cease to love either of us, be we ever so doubtful of it, or ever so disobedient. I hope you may one day have cause to rejoice, should you see me, the unworthy instrument of God, preaching to others,—yet have I vowed in the strength of my only Strength, in the name of my Beloved, to devote myself for ever to His cause. Do you not think it would be a bad beginning were I, knowing it to be my duty to be baptized, to shrink from it? If you are now as happy as I am, I can wish no more than that you may continue so. I am the happiest creature, I think, upon this globe.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit, and that it will help much to establish your health. I dare not ask you to write, for I know you are always so busy that it is quite a task to you. I hope my letter did not pain you, dear Mother; my best love to you, be assured that I would not do anything to grieve you, and I am sure that I remain, Your affectionate son, CHARLES HADDON.

Mr. and Mrs. Swindell's respects to you and dear Father.


HT: Spurgeon Archive

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A.W. Pink: True Christian Love



Love is the Queen of the Christian graces. It is a holy disposition given to us when we are born again by God. It is the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. True spiritual love is characterized by meekness and gentleness, yet it is vastly superior to the courtesies and kindnesses of the flesh.

We must be careful not to confuse human sentimentality, carnal pleasantries, human amiability and affability with true spiritual love. The love God commands, first to Himself and then to others, is not human love. It is not the indulgent, self-seeking love which is in us by nature. If we indulgently allow our children to grow up with little or, no Scriptural discipline, Proverbs plainly says we do not love them, regardless of the human sentimentality and affection we may feel for them. Love is not a sentimental pampering of one another with a loose indifference as to our walk and obedience before the Lord. Glossing over one another's faults to ingratiate ourselves in their esteem is not spiritual love.

The true nature of Christian love is a righteous principle which seeks the highest good of others. It is a powerful desire to promote their welfare. The exercise of love is to be in strict conformity to the revealed will of God. We must love in the truth. Love among the brethren is far more than an agreeable society where views are the same. It is loving them for what we see of Christ in them, loving them for Christ's sake. 

The Lord Jesus Himself is our example. He was not only thoughtful, gentle, self-sacrificing and patient, but He also corrected His mother, used a whip in the Temple, Severely scolded His doubting disciples, and denounced hypocrites. True spiritual love is above all faithful to God and uncompromising towards all that is evil. We cannot declare, 'Peace and Safety' when in reality there is spiritual decay and ruin! 

True spiritual love is very difficult to exercise because it is not our natural love. By nature we would rather love sentimentally and engender good feelings. Also many times true spiritual love is not received in love, but is hated as the Pharisees hated it. We must pray that God will fill us with His love and enable us to exercise it without dissimulation toward all.

HT:  PB Ministries
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