09 February 2014

The apple tree

Your weekly dose of Spurgeon
The PyroManiacs devote some space each weekend to highlights from the lifetime of works from the Prince of Preachers, Charles Haddon Spurgeon.  The following excerpt is from The teachings of nature in the Kingdom of grace, Song of Solomon chapter 2, pages 96-97, Pilgrim Publications.
"We are content with Him, and want no more." 

It may be that in the midst of the forest, while you are hungry and thirsty, you come upon a strangely beautiful tree: its proportions are exact, and as you gaze upon it from a distance you exclaim: “How wonderful are the works of God!” and you begin to think of those trees of the Lord which are full of sap, the cedars of Lebanon which He hath planted.

You stand under it and look up among the majestic boughs and the spreading branches, and you again admire the beauty of Nature as it comes from the hand of the Most High. But beauty can never satisfy hunger, and when a man is dying of thirst it is vain to talk to him of symmetry and taste. He wants food.

This reminds us that nowadays there be some who try to satisfy the souls of men with beauty. Look at their processions; who would not be charmed with their varied costumes, their spangled banners, their gilded crosses, and their melodious hymns? Listen to their choir; is not the singing perfection?

If you want a concert on the Sabbath day, and do not like to attend a theatre, you can find it in the cathedral, and in many a parish church, and please the Lord almost as well; if you want to have your senses gratified and cannot conscientiously attend an opera on Sunday, you can have ear and eye gratified at church—ay, and the nose as well in some places; and these amusements they mistake for religious exercises.

Compared with the plainness of worship which we follow, our casting out of everything like symbol, our abhorrence of everything that would take away the mind from God Himself and fix it upon secondary objects—compared with all this, their worship is enchanting indeed to the carnal mind, and we do not wonder that those who are led by taste should follow after it.

But oh, if a man once hungers after the bread of heaven, his taste for finery will be reduced to a very secondary position as a governing power of his mind. If once the soul craves after God, after peace, pardon, truth, reconciliation, holiness, it will seek the Lord Jesus, the apple tree, and forget the other trees, however shapely they may be.

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