C H Spurgeon – Meditatii pentru 1 Aprilie

MEDITAȚII PENTRU FIECARE ZI A ANULUI CHARLES H. SPURGEON Dimineața și Seara Să mă sărute cu sărutările gurii lui. Cântarea Cântărilor 1:2

spurgeon 2Timp de câteva zile am zăbovit asupra patimilor Domnului, şi vom continua tot cu ele. Astăzi, la începutul lunii, suntem chemaţi să avem sentimentele miresei lui Solomon. Observaţi cum aleargă spre El, fără nici un cuvânt introductiv, fără ca măcar să-i menţioneze numele; ea intră în subiect imediat, fiindcă vorbeşte despre Cel care este singurul El din lumea ei. Cât de îndrăzneaţă este dragostea ei! Bunătatea care i-a permis păcătoasei pocăite să-I spele picioarele cu mir de nard a fost foarte mare. Iubirea care a îngăduit ca Maria să stea la picioarele Lui şi să înveţe a fost deplină. Dar aici, dragostea, puternică, înflăcărată, aspiră la mai mult şi vrea o părtăşie completă. Estera tremura în prezenţa lui Ahaşveroş, dar mireasa care este liberă în iubire desăvârşită nu cunoaşte teama; Dacă am primit acelaşi spirit liber, am cere acelaşi lucru. Prin „sărutări” înţelegem variatele manifestări de afecţiune care îl asigură pe credincios de dragostea lui Isus. Sărutul împăcării pe care l-am experimentat la convertire a fost mai dulce decât mierea. Sărutul acceptării ne arde încă fruntea, fiindcă ştim că El ne-a acceptat persoana şi lucrarea prin har divin. Tânjim ca sărutul părtăşiei zilnice, prezente, să fie schimbat în sărutul de bun venit, care îndepărtează sufletul de pământ, şi apoi în sărutul desăvârşirii, care ne va umple de bucuria cerului. Credinţa este drumul nostru, dar părtăşia pe care o simţim este odihna. Credinţa este calea, dar comuniunea cu Isus este izvorul din care îşi astâmpără setea peregrinii. O Doamne al sufletelor noastre, nu te purta ca un străin cu noi; îngăduie ca buzele binecuvântării Tale să atingă buzele cererilor noastre. Îngăduie ca buzele plinătăţii Tale să atingă buzele nevoii noastre, şi vom simţi imediat efectul vindecător al sărutării Tale. Este vremea să căutaţi pe Domnul. Osea 10:12

flower hyacinthNumele lunii aprilie este un derivat al verbului latin aperio, care înseamnă a deschide. Toţi mugurii şi bobocii se deschid acum, şi am ajuns la porţile anotimpului florilor. Cititorule, dacă eşti încă nemântuit, fie ca inima ta, în acord cu trezirea universală a naturii, să se deschidă dă-L primească pe Domnul. Fiecare floare îmbobocită îţi spune „este vremea să căutaţi pe Domnul”. Nu dezacorda armonia naturii, lasă-ţi inima să îmbobocească şi să înflorească dorinţe sfinte. Vrei să spui că sângele fierbinte al tinereţii îţi curge năvalnic în vene? Atunci te îndemn să-i aduce Domnului tinereţea ta. Pentru mine a fost o fericire negrăită să fiu chemat din tinereţe, şi II laud pe Domnul în fiecare zi pentru acest lucru. Mântuirea este nepreţuită; este binevenită oricând, dar mântuirea timpurie are o dublă valoare. Tineri şi tinere, fiindcă puteţi pieri înainte să apucaţi să înfloriţi, căutaţi-L pe Domnul acum. Iar voi, care experimentaţi primele semne ale bătrâneţii, grăbiţi pasul. Junghiurile şi tusea sunt semne pe care trebuie să le luaţi în seamă. Este într-adevăr „vremea să căutaţi pe Domnul”. Nu cumva văd câteva fire argintii amestecate în şuviţele odinioară negre şi lucioase? Anii trec pe nesimţite, şi moartea este mai aproape decât credeţi. Fiecare întoarcere a primăverii ar trebui să vă inspire să vă rânduiţi casa. Dragă cititorule, dacă eşti înaintat în vârstă, îngăduie-mi să te implor să nu mai zăboveşti. Astăzi este un timp de har — fii recunoscător, fiindcă timpul este puţin şi se scurtează cu fiecare ticăit al ceasului. În camera ta tăcută, în prima seară a noii luni, îţi vorbesc cât pot de bine prin hârtie şi cerneală. Din adâncul sufletului meu, ca slujitor al Domnului, te avertizez că „este vremea să cauţi pe Domnul”. Nu neglija avertismentul. S-ar putea să fie ultima chemare înainte de distrugere, ultima silabă de pe buzele harului. (Via Horen si VIrginia Brasov)

Spurgeon Documentary (60 min)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Image by nklajn via Flickr

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SPURGEON in Limba Romana

Spurgeon – The Warrant of Faith – What do I need to know before I trust in Christ?

From Iain H. Murray’s book Spurgeon vs. Hyper-Calvinism – The Battle for Gospel Preaching (p 71):

One of the reasons Spurgeon rejected Hyper-Calvinism was that it turned individuals away from their sure warrant for trusting in Christ, namely the objective commands and invitations of the Gospel. Hyper-Calvinism denies such a universal warrant, applicable to all, and claims instead, that Scripture only addresses invitations to specific people- to the penitent, the „heavy laden”, to the convicted, to the „sensible sinner”, and so on. Under such preaching, gospel hearers must first find some warrant within themselves for thinking  that Christ’s invitations are addressed to them personally. Subjective experience is thus made a kind of necessar preliminary and qualification before anyone can trust in scriptural promises.

Against this,  Spurgeon held that the scriptural warrant for the unconverted to trust in Christ rests on nothing in themselves; the warrant lies in the invitation of Christ. 

His entire presentation of the gospel turned on the truth that no sinner has any more warrant than any other for trusting in Christ. The warrant lies in Scripture alone. Before a man has any willingness to be saved, ‘it is his duty to believe in Christ, for it is not man’s willingness that gives him a right to believe.Men are to believe in obedience to God’s command. God commandeth all men everywhere to repent, and this is his great command, „Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved”. Christ’s ambassadors are authorised to call „on all people of every clime and kindred, to believe the gospel with a promise of personal salvation to each and everyone that believes”. The message is not ‘wait for feelings’, it is,’Believe and live’. I’I find Jesus Christ says nothing to sinners about waiting, but very much about coming’.

To this the Hyper-Calvinists replied that if all are called to trust in Christ then such trust must involve them believing a falsehood because Christ has not died for all…and they chraged Spurgeon with inconsistency because Spurgeon believed in particular redemption. But Spurgeon, along with Scripture, did not make, „Believe that Christ died for you’, part of faith to which the unbeliever is summoned. The call to the sinner is to commit himself to Christ, not because he has been saved but rather because he is lost and must come to Jesus in order to be saved.

This still does not answer the question, How can sinners be offered a salvation which Christ did not fulfill on their behalf? Spurgeon set that question aside as something which God has not chosen to explain. It was enough for him to know that Christ does offer himself to all, that the gospel is for „every creature”, that all who come to Him will be saved, and that all who reject Him will be without excuse.

You can read Spurgeon’s sermon „A warrant of faith” here at spurgeon.org. The sermon was delivered Sunday morning, September 20th, 1863.

Spurgeon – Gospel Invitations

Iain H. Murray, in his book Spurgeon vs. Hyper-Calvinism, underlines the contemporary relevance of Spurgeon’s sermons resulting from his „serious and prolonged doctrinal controversy with Hyper-Calvinism” (quote from publisher’s note). During this same time Spurgeon was also battling Arminian doctrine.  Spurgeon’s personal debates with his contemporaries and the sermons they produced were never more needed than in times such as ours (an era that produced the preaching of the prosperity gospel and the cliche’ -„Be saved with this little sinner’s prayer”, etc).  In his book Murray addresses 4 reasons why Spurgeon rejected Hyper-Calvinism. They had to do with differing views on 1)Universal Gospel Invitations 2)Warrant of Faith 3)Human Responsibility and 4)the Love of God.  In the process we will see Spurgeon’s response gleaned out of the Bible as to what the word of God says on these 4 points. This, as any of the other books authored from the pen of  Iain H. Murray, is an essential read and should be in every person’s library along with all of  Spurgeon’s works.

All emphasis (highlighting some sentences) below is mine.

Gospel Invitations are Universal

In this subchapter of Iain Murray’s book (p 69) Murray states:

Spurgeon believed that historical evangelicalism differed from Hyper-Calvinism over the persons to whom the promises of the gospel are to be preached. Hyper-Calvinism views gospel preaching solely as a means for the ingathering of God’s elect. It argues that such words as, „Trust in Christ and you will be saved”, should only be addressed to elect sinners….and that…for a preacher to convey to his hearers the impression that they are all called to receive Christ, and to believe in him for salvation, is to deny, in the opinion of Hyper-Calvinists, the sovereignty of divine grace.

Spurgeon rejected the placing of such a restriction upon the invitation of the Gospel. The gospel is „good news” which God would have proclaimed throughout the world and to „every creature”. It’s message is not simply a statement of facts. It also contains clear,unrestricted, general promises, such as,”He that believeth on him is not condemned” (John 3:18); „Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved”(Romans 10:13); Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely” (Rev. 22:17). So the preacher has not done his work when he has spoken of Christ and proclaimed the historic facts of salvation. From there he must go on to urge the reception of Christ by all men.

On a side note here, sometimes I still run across the phrase „preach the gospel, if necessary use words”, a phrase that boggles the mind in light of the fact that proclamation can not ensue from silence and the phrase comes „wrongly” from folks adhering to a belief of faith based on works. Spurgeon notes that even just telling someone the historical gospel is not enough. In order to proclaim the gospel we must also urge the reception of Christ by all people.

And if we experience reticence when proclaiming the gospel to an unsaved person (read here- someone committing abhorrent sins, Spurgeon continues to exhort:

In the name of God he (preacher,person proclaiming the gospel) must assure all of the certainty of their welcome and forgiveness on their repentance and faith.

For this he cites Paul preaching in Antioch – Acts 13:38-39, to paraphrase, „all that believe are justified” and Colossians 1:28, „and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus”.

Iain Murray then describes the Hyper-Calvinist argument against gospel invitations because their belief is that grace is special and particular (intended for the elect) to which Spurgeon responded in one of his sermons entitled „Apostolic Exhortation” on the apostle Peter’s words to all his hearers from Acts 3:19,”Repent ye therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out”. Spurgeon:

Peter preached the Christ of the Gospel – preached it personally and directly at the crowd who were gathered around him…Grown up among us is a school of men who say that they rightly preach the gospel to sinners when they merely deliver statements of what the gospel is, and the result of dying unsaved, but they grow furious and talk of unsoundness if any venture to say to the sinner, „Believe”, or „Repent”. To this school Peter did not belong.

In another sermon Spurgeon refers to the brethren who „do not think it to be their duty to go into the highways and the hedges and bid all, as many as they find, to come to the supper. Oh no! They are too orthodox to obey the Master’s will; they desire to understand first who are appointed to come to the supper, and then they will invite them; that is to say, they will do what there is no necessity to do (i.e. present the gospel to those who are already saved).

In contrast with this, the apostles „delivered the gospel, the same gospel to the dead as to the living”, the same gospel to the non-elect as to the elect. The point of distinction is not in the gospel, but in its being applied by the Holy Ghost, or left to be rejected by man.

Charles Haddon Spurgeon – Biography (Online Book)

Photo courtesy of Life Magazine

If you would like to read more about Charles Haddon Spurgeon here are some useful links. First, you can add C.H.Spurgeon’s 4 Volume Autobiography through Google reader here (for free):

and at Spurgeon.org you can read C.H.Spurgeon – A Biography by Y.W.Fullerton:

Charles Haddon Spurgeon: A Biography


C.H. Spurgeon

 

    C. H. Spurgeon was to nineteenth-century England what D. L Moody was to America. Although Spurgeon never attended theological school, by the age of twenty-one he was the most popular preacher in London.
    He preached to crowds of ten thousand at Exeter Hall and the Surrey Music Hall. Then when the Metropolitan Tabernacle was built, thousands gathered every Sunday for over forty years to hear his lively sermons.
    In addition to his regular pastoral duties, he founded Sunday schools, churches, an orphanage, and the Pastor’s College. He edited a monthly church magazine and promoted literature distribution.
    Sincerely and straightforwardly he denounced error both in the Church of England and among his own Baptists. An ardent evangelical, he deplored the trend of the day toward biblical criticism.
    This warm, fascinating story enduringly records Spurgeon’s character and focuses light on different aspects of the man. The result is a lifelike picture of Spurgeon as he lived and labored for the Lord he loved.

Charles Haddon Spurgeon

By W. Y. Fullerton

PREFACE TO ORIGINAL EDITION

HE CONTEMPORARY SKETCHES of the life of Spurgeon are an interesting conglomerate of significant facts, but they scarcely give an adequate picture of the man as he lived and laboured with such prodigious energy. It seemed desirable, therefore, that before those who knew him and shared in his ministry had passed away, someone who had the privilege of his friendship should say the things about him that still needed to be said, and place the familiar things in truer perspective than was possible at the time.
  That pleasant burden has been placed upon me, and in fulfilment of the charge I have allowed to drop out of sight a multitude of particulars which were only interesting at the moment, not chronicling events as in an epoch but presenting the personality as in an epic, although I can only summon common prose in the doing of it.
    Sir Sidney Lee, in his Leslie Stephen lecture on the „Principles of Biography,” says excellently that „the aim of biography is, in general terms, to hand down to a future age the history of individual men and women, to transmit enduringly their character and exploits. Character and exploits are for biographical purposes inseparable. Character which does not translate itself into exploit is for the biographer a mere phantasm. But character and exploit jointly contribute biographic personality. Biography aims at satisfying the commemorative instinct by exercise of its power to transmit personality.”
    This biography is only historic in its earlier chapters; beyond these it seeks to focus the light on different aspects of the man, rather than to diffuse it in a narrative of the years and their happenings. This plan has its drawbacks, but I hope that the advantages may be appreciated, and if any seek the details of the time they will find them available elsewhere.
    Very heartily I express my indebtedness to Mr. William Higgs for placing at my disposal his remarkable collection of contemporary records, and to the Rev. Charles Spurgeon and Mrs. Thomas Spurgeon for their generous co-operation.
    To introduce Spurgeon to a generation that never knew him, and to keep alive his memory in a century he never knew, is honour enough for any man: a supreme privilege to a man who knew and honoured and loved him, and owes to him more than he can ever express or repay.

    W. Y. FULLERTON


Charles Haddon Spurgeon: A Biography


CONTENTS

     

  1. The Spurgeon Country: 1465-1769
  2. The Search for God
  3. The Apprentice Preacher
  4. The Voice in the City
  5. The Prophet of the People
  6. The Romantic Years
  7. The Great Tabernacle
  8. An Intimate Interlude
  9. A Word Portrait
  10. Spurgeon’s Sermons
  11. Spurgeon’s College
  12. Spurgeon’s Orphanage
  13. A Chapter Of Incidents
  14. A Bundle of Opinions
  15. Book Talk
  16. Some Minor Discussions
  17. Two Great Controversies
  18. Two Importunate Questions
  19. The Triumphant End
  20. Spurgeon In History
  21.  


This book was transcribed for by Dan Carlson.

C.H.Spurgeon – featured in the Vanity Fair Magazine – December 10, 1870 issue

Vanity Fair on Charles Spurgeon

This article and the caricature of Spurgeon appeared as a two-page spread in the 10 December 1870 issue of Vanity Fair.
Spurgeon caricature from Vanity Fair
Men of the Day. No. 16.
THE REV. CHARLES SPURGEON. INCE the old Methodist times there has been no preacher so capable of influencing masses of people as the Rev. Charles Spurgeon. Born in 1834, at Kelvedon, in Essex, he was only a cub of sixteen when he left the paternal den, and began to stalk the religious desert. He belonged to a family of Independents, some of whom were preachers, and has always been very independent himself; but, like a shaggy young Newfoundland, he took to the water at the first sight of drowning souls, and became a Baptist from conviction. His full-toned voice soon woke the echoes of the wilderness, and as early as 1852 people gathered, sub jove crudo, or elsewhere as it happened, to hear his warning voice. In 1853 the fame of his fine natural oratory had won for him the position of Minister in New Park Street Chapel, which soon overflowed with his audiences, so that the narrow streets were blocked, and the public-houses were crowded with those who could not find room in the chapel, or who, on leaving it with an awakened sense of sin, felt it like a relief to quench the spirit in a mug of beer. To widen the fold for the sake of these stray lambs, theatres and concert-rooms were converted into meeting-houses, the pulpit was exchanged for the platform, and a row of reporters below the footlights gave the utterances of this original and powerful preacher to the press. In his religious use of the grotesque, he resembles the old Puritans; and as chemists have made rum and sugar out of rags, he extracts edification out of slang. „I do not ask how are „your poor feet,” he began on one occasion, „but how are your poor souls?” No other preacher has succeeded like him in sketching the comic side of repentance and regeneration. Like the Primitive Methodist in Mr. Browning’s „Christmas Eve,” he would prove the Trinity from the three baskets on the head of Pharaoh’s baker. Lately, however, either because he is developing new faculties, or his huge congregation at the Metropolitan Tabernacle has been worked down to the more orthodox level of steady-going Churchmen, the world has heard less of these eccentricities, and such dissertations on justification as „Hooks and Eyes for Believers’ Breeches,” and the like, do not flow so freely from his pen. But he is still, and long may he live to be, a smiter of the Philistines; honest, resolute, and sincere; lively, entertaining, and, when he pleases, jocose; a straight hitter at such „twopenny-ha’penny divines” as Dr. Cumming; and a sworn foe of such Jesuits as Mr. Whalley and the Pope. Sound in his theology, according to the orthodox standard, he has the advantage of a powerful voice, a clear intellect, and a vivacity of diction but too rarely met with among popular preachers. His utterances are a singular mixture of realism and religious fantasy; but he is also a hard worker in his vocation; and whether he wields the Sword or the Trowel he always works in earnest. The Church of England owes him a deep debt of gratitude; and, if he would stoop to the office, would profit still more largely by making him Bishop of Southwark and St. Giles’s. It would be a curious experiment, in the mingling of such ingredients as salts and senna, to try the Rev. Charles Spurgeon in St. Martin’s Church, and the Rev. W. H. Humphrey in Mr. Spurgeon’s Tabernacle, by way of exchange. Will the Archbishop of Canterbury please make a note of it? 


C.H.Spurgeon – Scrisoare la un Pastor si Notite de Predica (Letter and Picture of his library)

Westwood
Beulah Hill
Upper Norwood
1887 June 11

Dear Friend,
On Wednesday next will you meet me at Liverpool Street at 10:09 a.m. to go to Loughton? I am delighted with the prospect of seeing you, and having you all to myself all day. I am glad to see that your place is one from which Liverpool Street can be readily reached, but still it is a journey at an early hour for you.
May we enjoy our Master’s presence.

Yours very heartily,C. H. Spurgeon 

(via)

Charles H. Spurgeon’s Sermon Notes

This one page of handwritten notes is all Spurgeon took with him into the pulpit when he preached Sermon 2890. A full transcription of the notes is at the bottom of the page. The sermon itself, titled „Unbelievers Upbraided,” is also part of the on-line collection of .
You will see by comparing these notes with the actual sermon that in the course of his preaching, Spurgeon recast or paraphrased all the wording he had jotted in his notes, and he never even reached the third main point of his outline. He seemed to know by the time he had completed his introduction that he would not preach all three points, because he announced only two of them. Comparing the notes with the actual sermon will give you some sense of how skilled Spurgeon was in speaking extemporaneously. He had an amazing facility with words, a phenomenal memory, and an uncanny ability to think on his feet.
When we remember that Spurgeon usually waited until Saturday night to prepare his outline for the Sunday morning sermon, we cannot help but be amazed at the richness and depth of his preaching. The key to this was Spurgeon’s voracious reading habit. He filled his mind with the truth of God’s Word from the beginning to the end of the week, every week of his life. He therefore could preach from the overflow of his heart, and his unique mind and abilities enabled him to give a sermon extemporaneously that most of us would be hard-pressed to write in a whole weeks’ time. Preachers who don’t have a memory like Spurgeon’s or verbal abilities like his would be well advised not to try to follow Spurgeon’s method, but to prepare an outline or manuscript with more meat on the bones.

Mark 16:14

This shows us the way in which we must deal with unbelief in ourselves, and in others. It is a sin and should be treated as such. Jesus would not have upbraided had not this been the case.
In the case before us they had repeated testimonies from their own brethren, and backed by his own word—but we have even more guilt, for we know him to be risen and yet doubt.

     

  1. Let us consider its evil in itself.
    Suppose someone doubted us.
    Think of who he is and what he has done.
    Consider his near and dear relation to us.
    The many times in which we have doubted
    And upon the same matter.
    Where his promises forbade unbelief
    Despite our own declarations.
    What have we believers in preference?
  2. Let us observe the evils which it causes.
    It grieves the Spirit of God.
    It causes disbeliefs in our own hearts.
    It weakens us for action or suffering.
    It depresses others.
    It leaves an ill impression [on] sinners.
    It cannot but gender to bondage.
  3. Let us reflect upon its sinfulness where it reigns.
    It gives God the lie.
    It argues hatred in the heart.
    It is the sign of utter moral death.
    It is the essence of hell.
  4.  

Charles H. Spurgeon’s Personal Library

Spurgeon's Library
Spurgeon’s study at Westwood, his family home, contained more than 12,000 volumes. The majority of these were acquired by a donor who gave them to Curry Library at William Jewell College (near Kansas City). Books, furniture, and all were moved there, where they resided in a room that was a replica of Spurgeon’spersonal study until 2006.

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