2006-05-08 - Reading Thoughts
John 14:2, "In My Father's house, there are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you."
For the last 2+ years, I have been reading a sermon from the 19th century Baptist preacher Charles Spurgeon every day. It comes to a lot of sermons, about 15 volumes so far, and I am about 1/4 of the way through his sermon set of 63 volumes. The set apparently consists of over 25 million words, so after a little over two years, I have probably covered about five million or so of those words. Today, I would like to take a moment and share two things I found somewhat profound in all those words. One is an illustration he used that I thought was good, and one is his relation of how he views and considers his own salvation. I hope you enjoy them, find them encouraging and even harbor a hope that they will challenge and expand your thinking.
The illustration respects a king who had a fool (jester) in his court. The jester was performing various foolish things to entertain the king, and the king was very amused. The king gave him a staff and said, "Keep that till you find a bigger fool than yourself." Well, time passed, and the king was about to die. The jester came and visited him. "Master, what is the matter?" "I am going to die." "Going to die, where's that?" "I am going to die, man, don't laugh at me now." "How long are you going to be there?" "Well, where I am going, I shall live forever." "Have you got a house there?" "No" "Have you made any preparation for the journey?" "No" "Have you made any provision whatever, as you are going to live there such a long time?" "No" "There, take the stick; fool as I am, I have made preparation. I am not such a fool as to have to live in a place where I have not got a house."
Then the following is Spurgeon himself discussing his own personal salvation, some of his struggles and how he reconciled some issues he dealt with.
"The way I believe in Christ, and I know not how to speak of it, except as I feel it myself, is simply this: I know it is written that 'Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners.' I do firmly believe that those he came to save, he will save. The only question I ask myself is, 'Can I put myself among that number whom he has declared he came to save?' Am I a sinner? Not one that utters the word in a complimentary sense, but do I feel the deep compunction in my inmost soul? Do I stand and feel convicted, guilty, and condemned? I do, I know I do. Whatever I may not be, one thing I know I am -- a sinner, guilty, consciously guilty, and often miserable on account of that guilt. Well, then the Scripture says, 'This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners.'"
'And when thine eye of faith is dim,
Let me put my entire trust in the bloody sacrifice which he offered upon my behalf. No dependence will I have in my prayings, my doings, my feelings, my weepings, my preachings, my thinkings, my Bible readings, nor all that. I would desire to have good works, and yet in my good works, I will not put a shadow of trust.
'Nothing in my hands I bring,
And if there be any power in Christ to save, I am saved; if there be an everlasting arm extended by Christ, and if that Saviour who hung there was 'God ever all, blessed forever,' and if his blood is still exhibited before the throne of God as the sacrifice for sin, then perish I cannot, till the throne of God shall break, and till the pillars of God's justice shall crumble."
Soli Deo Gloria,