31 May 2009

Wanted: Mature Christians

Your weekly dose of Spurgeon
posted by Phil Johnson

The PyroManiacs devote some space each weekend to highlights from The Spurgeon Archive. The following excerpt is from "Ripe Fruit," a sermon preached 14 August 1870 at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, London.

he church wants mature Christians very greatly, and especially when there are many fresh converts added to it. New converts furnish impetus to the church, but her backbone and substance must, under God, lie with the mature members.

We want mature Christians in the army of Christ, to play the part of veterans, to inspire the rest with coolness, courage, and steadfastness; for if the whole army is made up of raw recruits the tendency will be for them to waver when the onslaught is fiercer than usual. The old guard, the men who have breathed smoke and eaten fire before, do not waver when the battle rages like a tempest, they can die but they cannot surrender. When they hear the cry of "Forward," they may not rush to the front so nimbly as the younger soldiers, but they drag up the heavy artillery, and their advance once made is secure. They do not reel when the shots fly thick, but still hold their own, for they remember former fights when Jehovah covered their heads.

The church wants in these days of flimsiness and timeserving, more decided, thoroughgoing, well-instructed, and confirmed believers.

We are assailed by all sorts of new doctrines. The old faith is attacked by so-called reformers, who would reform it all away. I expect to hear tidings of some new doctrine once a week. So often as the, moon changes, some prophet or other is moved to propound a now theory, and believe me, he will contend more valiantly for his novelty than ever he did for the gospel.

The discoverer thinks himself a modern Luther, and of his doctrine he thinks as much as David of Goliath's sword, "There is none like it." As Martin Luther said of certain in his day, these inventors of new doctrines stare at their discoveries like a cow at a new gate, as if there were nothing else in all the world but the one thing for them to stare at.

We are all expected to go mad for their fashions, and march to their piping. To whom we give place; no, not for an hour.

They may muster a troop of raw recruits, and lead them whither they would, but for confirmed believers they sound their bugles in vain. Children run after every new toy; any little performance in the street, and the boys are all agog, gaping at it; but their fathers have work to do abroad, and their mothers have other matters at home; your drum and whistle will not, draw them out. For the solidity of the church, for her steadfastness in the faith, for her defense against the constantly recurring attacks of heretics and infidels, and for her permanent advance and the seizing of fresh provinces for Christ, we want not only your young, hot blood, which may God always send to us, for it is of immense service, and we cannot do without it, but we need also the cool, steady, well-disciplined, deeply-experienced. hearts of men who know by experience the truth of God, and hold fast what they have learned in the school of Christ.

May the Lord our God therefore send us many such; they are wanted.

C. H. Spurgeon


Marie said...

Who knew there were Word of Faith and Emergent gurus in the 19th century.

Mike Riccardi said...

The old faith is attacked by so-called reformers, who would reform it all away.

We hear a lot of this under the banner of "Semper reformanda." It's a really spot-on observation that they "would reform it all away."

God give us more men like Spurgeon.

Jon said...

It never ceases to amaze me when reading these excerpts of Spurgeon how the current "Church" is really no different than it was in his day. Same old heresies are constantly repackaged to look new and relevant.

I guess Solomon was right when he stated that there was nothing new under the sun. ;-)

charles said...

Of interest, Grace Community Church elder and executive director of Grace to You, Phil Johnson, is a Baptistic Calvinist. This statement appears on his website: “Theologically, Phil is a committed Calvinist—with a decidedly Baptistic bent.” (Who is Phillip R. Johnson?) Even more interesting is this statement: “He...is a member of the Fellowship of Independent Reformed Evangelicals (FIRE).” The slogan of FIRE is “In essentials Unity, In non-essentials Liberty, in all things Charity.” (FIRE) Why is this interesting? FIRE’s slogan is nearly identical to the slogan of Phoenix Freemasonry! “It is the glory of Masonry to teach Unity in essentials, Liberty in details, Charity in all things; and by this sign its spirit must at last prevail.”


Mike Riccardi said...

Charles: Of interest...

You went wrong right there at the beginning.

DJP said...

Well Charles, you're just scratching the surface!

The way I understand it, if you look at it right, Phil practically knows Kevin Bacon!

Mark B. Hanson said...


Of course you know that the Freemasons borrowed that phrase from the Christians, since it was first used by Augustine in the 5th century.

I notice that your email uses the words "the" and "this", the very words used in the Blue Lodge rite, and also in the Koran. Be very careful!

Gary said...

Re: "http://www.watch.pair.com/macarthur.html"


David Rupert said...

Spurgeon has a way of nailing us....I just don't know if we need to reach out to the culture more, or simply let the culture come to us.

There is a good post on Christian language found at the Red Letter Believers blog here:


FX Turk said...

This just in: John MacArthur thinks the church should grow. Watchbloggers anathematize him for his concessions to the church growth movement.



Fantastic. Turns out I am also a cross-dresser because the socks I'm wearing today are nylon and not cotton.

Nash Equilibrium said...

Dude, that is probably the most awesome expose of conspiracy theory mindset that I've read in a long time. The use of sarcasm in combination with the reductio ad absurdum approach is genius, pure genius. I will use it as an instructive piece for my conspiracy-theorist relatives to show them how if you look hard enough, you can find a conspiracy in anything.
Thanks for sharing it.

Sharon said...

Rule 6: Please don't feed the trolls. Especially those without Blogger profiles.

A Musician by Grace

FX Turk said...

I also wanted to point out the DJP owns a sword and is happy about it, therefore he's a gay blade.

Last man out please turn off the lights.

Nash Equilibrium said...

He can't have a blogger profile, because "they" would quickly get to him if "they" knew who he is.

You'd be paranoid, too, if the whole world were out to get you!

Gary said...

Quote of the day and a lesson in context:

Frank Turk, "Fantastic. Turns out I am also a cross-dresser"