posted by Phil Johnson
The PyroManiacs devote some space each weekend to highlights from The Spurgeon Archive.The following excerpt is from "A Sermon for a Winter's Evening," a message on John 18:18, first published in 1910. The text describes a scene in the courtyard outside the High Priest's house on the night of Jesus' crucifixion: "And the servants and officers stood there, who had made a fire of coals, for it was cold: and they warmed themselves: and Peter stood with them, and warmed himself."
hough no doubt the motives which led both Peter and John into the high priest's house were commendable, Peter's position among the soldiers and hangers-on around the fire was extremely full of peril, and offered no corresponding advantages. Did he not know that "evil communications corrupt good manners"? Did he not know that the men who had taken his Lord prisoner were not fit associates for him? Should he not have felt that, though he might have his hands warmed, he would be likely to get his heart blackened by mixing with such company?
Brethren, I like to warm my hands; but if I cannot warm them without burning them, I would rather keep them cold.
Many things are in a measure desirable; but if you cannot obtain them without exposing yourself to the smut of sin, you had better let them alone. Has not our Lord called us to go without the camp? Are we not warned against being conformed to this world? Deny yourselves the warm place around society's charcoal brazier, for its sulphurous vapor will do you more harm than the cold. Some tell us that we must keep abreast of the times; but if the times run the wrong way, I see no reason why we should run with them. Rather let us leave the times, and dwell in the eternities. If I must, in warming my hands, defile them—I will sooner let them become blue with cold.