24 January 2010

Christ and Him Crucified

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 "Christ Crucified," a sermon preached Sunday morning 11 February 1855 in Exeter Hall.

et me very briefly tell you what I believe preaching Christ and him crucified is.

My friends, I do not believe it is preaching Christ and him crucified, to give people a batch of philosophy every Sunday morning and evening, and neglect the truths of this Holy Book. I do not believe it is preaching Christ and him crucified, to leave out the main cardinal doctrines of the Word of God, and preach a religion which is all a mist and a haze, without any definite truths whatever.

I take it that man does not preach Christ and him crucified, who can get through a sermon without mentioning Christ's name once; nor does that man preach Christ and him crucified, who leaves out the Holy Spirit's work, who never says a word about the Holy Ghost, so that indeed the hearers might say, "We do not so much as know whether there be a Holy Ghost."

And I have my own private opinion, that there is no such thing as preaching Christ and him crucified, unless you preach what now-a-days is called Calvinism. I have my own ideas, and those I always state boldly. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism. Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else. I do not believe we can preach the gospel, if we do not preach justification by faith without works; not unless we preach the sovereignty of God in his dispensation of grace; nor unless we exalt the electing, unchangeable, eternal, immutable, conquering love of Jehovah; nor, I think, can we preach the gospel, unless we base it upon the peculiar redemption which Christ made for his elect and chosen people; nor can I comprehend a gospel which lets saints fall away after they are called, and suffers the children of God to be burned in the fires of damnation, after having believed.

Such a gospel I abhor. The gospel of the Bible is not such a gospel as that. We preach Christ and him crucified in a different fashion, and to all gainsayers we reply, "We have not so learned Christ."

C. H. Spurgeon


Sir Brass said...

A-MEN! Christ and Him crucified is by necessity and definition TRINITARIAN, and that Godhead being by necessity and scripture SOVEREIGN. :)

stranger.strange.land said...

That is the Gospel, plain and simple. Spurgeon is a man after my own heart. May God fill His church with men and women after His own heart.

Craig B

donsands said...

I heard a preacher on my way to church yesterday say, "The Gospel is that Jesus died for every person on earth. He has died for their sins. But not every person knows this."

He wasn't a universalist, and yet he is.

He used the verse in 1 John where it says Jesus died not only for our sins, but those of the whole world.

So, most Christinas when they think of Christ crucified, they think of all the sinners in the world being loved by God so much, that He gave Jesus for them.

I agree with the pastors words here.

Jesus was crucified for His Sheep, and He came to save His lost children of wrath, each and every one.
The Lord did not shed His blood in vain, but the Father laid on Him all my sin. What a Savior indeed! And what a loving Father, who loves us with an everlasting love (Jer. 31:3).

"When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all flesh, to GIVE eternal life to all whom you HAVE GIVEN him. And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed."

"My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!"

I wish that God would save ever sinner. And then again, I wonder why He would save any of us.

Thanks for the Spurgeon.

James Scott Bell said...

First three paragraphs excellent. Then, D'oh!

Mike Riccardi said...

Amen. May God give us the boldness to be so clear in our own preaching.

Mike Riccardi said...

So here's a question.

If he could say, "Such a gospel I abhor. The gospel of the Bible is not such a gospel as that," how does 'such a gospel' not fall into the category of what Paul was talking about in the opening verses of Galatians?

We know that Spurgeon considered Arminians his brothers in Christ, just as we all do here, even if we believe them to be badly mistaken about these things. But if the gospel of the Arminians is worthy of our abhorrence, and if it is not the Gospel of the Bible, what order of reasoning keeps us from declaring 'anathemas' on our Arminian counterparts?

I really don't mean to start a fight. And I honestly am not insinuating that we should be burning Arminians as heretics. I'm honestly wondering how we can reasonably believe both (1) the gospel of the Arminians is "really not another" (Gal 1:7), and (2) they are not "accursed" (Gal 1:8, 9).

donsands said...

God gives us wisdom, for non-reformed and reformed.

The Scriptures are our authority. I believe this, and so do my Arminian friends.

We then go to our favorite verses. I go to Matt. 1:21. My friend goes to 1 John 2:2.


Then we both go and serve Christ, and we both long with all our hearts, as much as possible, to bring all the glory to God.

And when we all reach glory, God will give praise in His most sovereign way (1 Cor. 4:5).

And yet I have other friends who like to discuss the Scriptures about free will/election.

jmb said...

Mike Riccardi: That's a good question. I have two possible answers, although they're both shaky.

One is that Paul in Galatians seems to be concentrating on the heresy of combining works with faith in order for salvation to occur. In the Spurgeon excerpt, that's the first thing he mentions. Maybe that's the "breaking point" for Spurgeon. As far as I know, Arminians don't consider their saving faith to be a work.

However, Spurgeon mentions other things that he considers essential to the gospel, and Arminians, so far as I understand it, don't believe in some (all?) of these things. So possibly the answer is in the words "private opinion." Maybe that means that Spurgeon isn't as sure of these things as he is about other Biblical doctrines. Hard to swallow, I know, but why does he say "private opinion," unless he meant it ironically?

Anyway, if it's true that he considered Arminians to be fellow believers, that's the best that I can come up with.

SamWise said...

We have to remember that some of these dear Arminians lambs will someday come to the truth.

I certainly am more Reformed today than I was 10 years ago. There was a time when I was that young lamb lost in Arminian legalism. But other dear brothers in Christ preached the gospel to me and I was drawn to the truth!

So let's pray for our own love and be careful to be winsome and convince by example. We have been given grace and we should win by grace and stand in grace. Gal 3!

In the Lamb,

donsands said...

"dear Arminians lambs will someday come to the truth."

I know some Arminians who would say the same for us dear Calvinists.

SamWise said...


Do we not have truth on our side? If so, then we should let the Lord Holy Spirit bring the elect to the truth. Results are not our domain but gracious behavior is!

In the Lamb

donsands said...

"Do we not have truth on our side?"

I have Non-Reformed friends who would say the same to each other.