03 May 2015

Fire desired

 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 Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, volume 7, sermon number 375, "Temple glories."
"When the congregation is asleep, it is a sign the minister ought to be in bed, where he could be comfortable, rather than in a pulpit where he is mischievous."

Oh! I have heard a man preach a sermon to which an angel might have listened for its faultless truthfulness, but it lacked fire; but I have known another whose ministry was faulty in many respects, rough were his words; the Gospel which he preached was not a full-orbed gospel, but yet he spoke like a man who meant what he said, with his heart boiling over at his eyes, with his soul rolling out of his mouth in one tremendous cataract, and men were moved, and the masses flocked, and thousands listened, and souls were saved because the man was in earnest.

Ah! when I see a man go up into his pulpit and ask the Lord the Holy Spirit to assist him, and open wide his manuscript and reads it all, I wonder what he means; and when he prays that he may have the tongue of fire, and then speaks in such a mumbling, cold, unearnest manner, that his hearers detect at once that there is no heart about him—I wonder what he means.

 Oh! fire of God, come down upon the tongue of the minister! But we need this fire upon the hearers too. How well people listen when they come to hear something! When they come up, and do not expect to get anything, it is not often they are disappointed; but when they are willing to listen to whatever is to be said in God’s name, how delightful, how easy, how pleasant it is to address them! We need much of that kind of fire.

Oh! how we want the ear that is circumcised,—the heart that is softened! The minister is the sower; O God, plough the furrows first! The minister is the waterer; great God, plant the cedar first! We are but the lights; great God, give the eyes. We are but the trumpets; O Lord, open thou the ears. We do but speak—great God, give, life that when we speak we may not speak to dead men, but that life may be given through our word. Fire is abundantly wanted upon the hearers.

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