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 60, sermon number 3,412, "The heavenly rainbow.""God's sovereignty must, of necessity, be absolute and unlimited."
When you read God’s Word, Egypt comes upon the stage—Assyria, Babylon, Greece and Rome. Yet what are they but a sort of background? They come and they go, for all their secular grandeur, as mere accessories. The central figure is always the election of grace, the people of God; for the rest, they are merely the ploughmen and the vinedressers for the Lord’s own people.
Sometimes these nations are nursing fathers; at other times they are sharp rods; whichever they may be, they are mere instruments. The Bible speaks of them as so much scaffolding for the building of the living temple in which the mercy of God shall be displayed.
Whenever you read, or hear people talk about prophecy, you may depend upon it that inspiration has not been given to tell of Louis Napoleon, or any other earthly sovereign. It is not the history of Prussia, Russia, or France that the heavenly apocalypse unveils. The whole book is written for his people; it does give us the history of the Church, but it does not give us the history of anything else.
The way to read the book, if you do read it, is with this central thought in your minds, that God has not revealed to us anything concerning Assyria, Babylon, Greece, or Rome for their own sakes, but he has referred to them because they happen to have a connection with the history of his Church. That is all; for he has chosen Jacob to himself, and Israel to be his peculiar treasure.
My brethren, I believe that when kings and potentates meet in the cabinet chamber and consult together according to their ambition, a Counsellor whom they never see pulls the strings, and they are only his puppets; and even when armies meet in battle array, when the world seems shaken to and fro with revolutions, and the most stable thrones quiver, as though they were but vessels out at sea, there is a secret force working in all.
The end and drift of these momentous actions is the bringing out of the chosen race, the salvation of the blood-bought company, and the glory of God in the redeeming of the world unto himself. When you read the newspaper, read it to see how your heavenly Father is managing the world for the good of his own children.
All else, be it the disposal of a throne, the settlement of a political question, or the winning of a boat race, are minor things compared with the interests of the election of grace. All things are revolving and cooperating for good. They are working together for good to them that love God, and are the called according to the purpose of his grace. By them he will make manifest throughout the ages unto the angels and the principalities, his manifold wisdom.