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A Promise and Precedent
A SERMON PUBLISHED ON THURSDAY, JANUARY 14, 1909.
DELIVERED BY C. H. SPURGEON,
AT THE METROPOLITAN TABERNACLE, NEWINGTON, ON LORD'S-DAY EVENING, JANUARY 4, 1874.
"He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive ofMine, and shall show it unto you." John 16:14.
[Other Sermons by Mr. Spurgeon, upon this passage, are as follows— Sermons #565, Volume 8—THE HOLY SPIRIT GLORIFYING CHRIST; #2212, Volume 37—"HONEY IN THE MOUTH!" and #3062, Volume 53—THE SPIRIT'S OFFICE TOWARDS DISCIPLES]
JESUS CHRIST, our gracious Lord and Master, is here speaking of the Holy Spirit and He says of Him, "He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you." Our Lord Jesus Christ, in His own personal teaching, did not plainly declare all the Truths which He intended to reveal because the Holy Spirit was not then given to His disciples and they were not, at that time, able to receive all that He might have taught them. He Himself said to them, "I have yet many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now." The germ of everything that would be revealed was in the teaching of Christ, but not the full development of it. That was left till after the Holy Spirit had been given on the day of Pentecost. In the Acts of the Apostles, in their various Epistles and in the Apocalypse given to John, we have the full Revelation of the Truth of God—the Holy Spirit there taking of the things of Christ and revealing them to us and also, according to His promise, showing us, in the Book of the Revelation, "things to come."
Note that our Savior did not go away from His disciples and leave the Spirit to come upon them without previously intimating to them the fact that He was coming. He prepared them for the change. While He was here upon earth, He was personally at the head of His people and as it was His purpose that the Holy Spirit should act as His Substitute during His absence, He informed His followers that it would be so. He told them that the Spirit of God would come, that He would more fully reveal the great Truths which He had Himself taught to His disciples and that He would apply the Truths already revealed to the hearts of His people so that they would be able to understand much that had, up to now, been beyond their comprehension. There was no separation of the dispensation of Christ from that of the Holy Spirit, but they were dovetailed and pieced into one another by these memorable words of the Lord Jesus just before He went to Gethsemane and Calvary—"He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you."
In considering this declaration of our Savior with regard to the Holy Spirit, we shall view it in three aspects, praying that God will make it a blessing while we are meditating upon it. We shall, first, view the text doctrinally. Secondly, considerit as apromise. And, thirdly, look upon it as aprecedent ormodel by which we should work.
I. First, then, WE WILL VIEW THE TEXT DOCTRINALLY.
This declaration of Christ contains some most important Doctrines and the best is this—that it is the office and aim of the Holy Spirit to glorify Jesus Christ No study in Scripture is more interesting or profitable to the Christian than the Revelation which is given to us concerning the Sacred Trinity and the various parts which the Divine Persons take in the work of our salvation. John Bunyan wrote a notable work upon the Trinity and the Christian—and nothing could be more appropriate, for there would be no Christian without the Trinity! It needs the Father, the Son and the Spirit to produce that noblest kind of man, a Believer in the Lord Jesus Christ! The various offices of the blessed Trinity in Unity are usually distinct and clearly defined, yet they sometimes intertwist and interchange, just as Jesus in our text bears witness to the Spirit and the Spirit continually bears witness to the Lord Jesus and glorifies Him. Brothers and Sisters, I pray you will remember that when the Spirit convicts the world of sin, it is in order that the convicted sinner may learn the preciousness of that Savior to whom the Spirit bears witness! When He convicts the world ofjudgment, it is not only
that the Judge may be honored as He deserves to be, but also that the way by which judgment may be averted through the substitutionary Sacrifice of Christ may be made clear to the sinner's mind. And when He convicts the world of righteousness, what righteousness is it but that which Jesus Christ has worked out and brought in—that righteousness alone in which saved sinners are able to appear before God without spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing? The Holy Spirit always works with this aim and objective—to lead sinners to admire, adore and trust in Jesus Christ! His Omnipotence bends itself to this end—that Jesus Christ may be glorified in the hearts and lives of sinners saved by His Grace!
I gather from our text another Doctrine, namely, that, any teaching which does not glorify Jesus Christ is not the teaching of the Holy Spirit. By this simple test, the humblest among us may be able to judge even that form of teaching which is most pretentious. And if it cannot endure this test, it may be rejected without hesitation! The poorest man who enters any assembly, if he hears a Doctrine that glorifies Christ, can say, "I may safely listen to this teaching, for the Spirit of God will set His seal to it." But if, on the other hand, amidst a blaze of intellectual splendor and a brilliant display of mere human knowledge, nothing is said that will glorify the Lord Jesus Christ, the true child of God says to himself, "What business have I to be in this place? This is not the company that is congenial to me, nor the teaching to which I ought to give heed. Here is neither the food for my soul nor yet the opportunity of glorifying my dear Lord and Master! I will leave this assembly and seek to find some other place where the Spirit of God is at work in His chosen ministry of glorifying Christ." Thus the great Doctrine that it is the Spirit's work to glorify Christ furnishes us with a spiritual detector by which we may discover what is true gold and what is counterfeit—and by which we may judge whether the voices that we hear are voices of the night which cry out to us to follow them in the darkness, or the voices of the dawning which herald the coming of the day!
There is this further Doctrine in the text, that the Holy Spirit, in glorifying Christ, acts in sacred concert with the other Persons of the blessed Trinity, for Jesus said, "He shall receive of Mine." I am not going to explain this declaration of Christ. I cannot do so, for I do not, myself, fully understand it. All I can say is that the Holy Spirit is represented here as receiving the things of Christ. Now the Holy Spirit is continually spoken of in the Scriptures as Divine and He certainly is Divine—yet Christ here says that He receives or takes from the Father the things of Christ that He may show them to us. They are not His own things—things of His own devising or suggesting—but those which Christ calls His. So, just as Jesus said that He did not come in His own name, but in the name of the Father who had sent Him, so the Spirit of God does not come in His own name, nor come with His own message—but He receives the things of Christ and shows them to us. I delight in this sharing of the great work by the glorious Trinity in Unity! I love to see the Father, Son and Spirit all taking part in the salvation of the elect! Just as in the Creation, God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness," and there was a council held to decide as to that early work, so here it is not merely one of the Persons of the Trinity, but all Three who are concerned in the greater work of man's new creation! The Spirit receives from the Father the things of Christ and so it is as though God said, "Let Us make man new in Our image, after Our likeness." Father, Son and Spirit work together in perfecting the new creation—so let us always give undivided and equal honor to the Father, to the Son and to the Holy Spirit—
"Give to the Father praise,
Give glory to the Son,
And to the Spirit of His Grace
Be equal honor done."
Further, I want you to notice that the Holy Spirit, being bent upon glorifying Christ, glorifies Him with His own things. Jesus says, "He shall receive of Mine." The Holy Spirit does not go after something apart from Christ in order to bring glory to Christ—if Christ is to be glorified, the crown must be made out of His own jewels—and the jewels must be found in His own mine! So, Beloved, in order to honor Christ, you must go to Christ—you must find Christ's honors in Christ Himself. Even the Holy Spirit, who is Omniscient, does not look outside of Christ in order to find something with which to glorify Him. "He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine." And none of us can ever honor Christ by bringing anything to Him. If we want to honor Him, we must honor Him with that which is already His own. If I want to honor the Lord Jesus Christ at this moment, how can I do it better than by preaching of His own Person, His own Manhood, His own Godhead, His own life, His own death, His own Resurrection, His own Ascension and His own coming again in the glory of His Father with the holy angels? It must be with the things of Christ that we honor Christ!
If the Holy Spirit willed to do so, He could bring forth matchless novelties in honor of Christ, but He does not will to do so. He honors Christ with that which is Christ's—and if you and I, standing in the pulpit or anywhere else, want to honor Christ, we must not seek to excogitate some brilliant thought from our own brain, or come before our fellows to display the results of our own wonderful culture—the grand flowers which we have grown in the well-tilled garden of our own highly educated minds! Oh no—Christ must have His own flowers to smell if He is to have a sweet and acceptable posy brought to Him! The ingredients of the incense put into His censer must be all His own—nothing else will be acceptable to Him. Even in the Song of Solomon, you remember that when Christ comes into His own garden, He says, "I have gathered My myrrh with My spice; I have eaten My honeycomb with My honey; I have drunk My wine with My milk." Nothing will so glorify Christ as that which is already His own! The Spirit of God knows this and, therefore, in order to glorify Christ, He takes of Christ's own things and of nothing else.
Continuing a little further—this view of the Doctrine in the text—I would remind you that when the Holy Spirit wishes to glorify Christ with Christ's own things, He presents them to the hearts of Believers—"He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you." Without His Divine assistance, you cannot see it—not because it is not visible, but because your eyes are too dim to perceive it. The work of the Spirit of God is to shine upon the beauties of Christ so that we can see them. And when He does so illuminate them, it is a glorifying of Christ for us to see those beauties! It is not merely to Christ' s Glory for us to talk about them—that is another way of glorifying Him—but if you cannot talk, if you have no gifts of eloquence, notice this blessed Truth of God and be comforted by it—Christ is glorified by your seeing His Glory! Suppose that you are so slow of speech that you cannot even tell your own wife or child what you have seen of the beauties of Christ, yet the Holy Spirit has glorified Christ when He has shown those beauties to you. Perhaps you are only a poor servant, or a humble working man living and laboring in obscurity—or possibly a young child or a maiden scarcely known beyond your own family circle, yet believe me—when you see the Lord Jesus Christ in His beauty, as He is revealed to you by the light of the Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ is glorified! It is true that He is glorified when I proclaim His dear name to the thousands who gather in this House of Prayer, but He is also glorified in that little bedroom of yours where, perhaps in the dead of night when you lie awake, you say to yourself, "Precious Christ, what a dear Savior You are to me!" When you get a fresh view of Him. When you catch a new ray of light streaming upon His blessed Countenance and you perceive a few more of those lines of love that are written there—Jesus Christ is glorified! I think this is part of what Christ meant when He said to His disciples concerning the Holy Spirit, "He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you."
Oh, what a wondrous view of Christ the Holy Spirit sometimes gives us! As yet, however, I am afraid that very few of us have had more than a partial view of Him. Have you not sometimes stood upon a hill when it has been a day of mingled cloud and sunshine and there has been a break in the clouds—and the sun has shone through and that hill over yonder has been all ablaze with the golden sunlight—and that part of the landscape has been marvelously illuminated? All down the valley there was gloom. But presently the clouds shifted again and then the beams of light traveled down into the plains and the river flowing below flashed in the sunlight while the hill was once more enveloped in shade! As the clouds continued to move, the sunshine kept lighting up different parts of the landscape. It is just like that with regard to our view of Christ! The Spirit of God, who is the very perfection of light, shines upon Christ with a brilliance that the sun never possessed! Sometimes the Spirit shines upon Christ's Priesthood and oh, what a wonderful sight it is, then, for us to see Christ offering up Himself as the one great Sacrifice for sin! Another time it may be that the Spirit shines especially upon the prophetic Character of Christ and we then admire Him as revealing God to us and teaching us the Truth! Perhaps the next day the Spirit shows us Christ's royal Character and then we cry, or more probably we sing—
"All hail the power of Jesus' name! Let angels prostrate fall! Bring forth the royal diadem, And crown Him Lord of All! Babes, men and sires who know His love, Who feel your sin and thrall, Now joy with all the hosts above And crown Him Lord of All!'
Sometimes a beam of light will shine upon Christ's hands that were pierced by the nails and then we wonderingly ask, "How could the hands of the Creator of the universe be thus nailed to the tree for us?" And soon the Spirit's bright light gleams upon the face of Jesus and we then—
"See Divine compassion
Floating in His languid eyes"
as He bows His head to death for us. But what will it be if the Holy Spirit shall be pleased to give us a full view of Christ upon the Cross? Then will our happy spirits indeed glorify Him and each redeemed one will softly sing—
"Sweet the moments, rich in blessing,
Which before the Cross I spend.
Life, and health, and peace possessing
From the sinner's dying Friend.
Here I'll sit forever viewing
Mercy's streams, in streams of blood.
Precious drops! My soul bedewing
Plead and claim my peace with God.
Here it is I find my Heaven
While upon the Cross I gaze—
Love I much? I ve more forgiven.
Im a miracle of Grace." Oh, for such a sight of Christ as that, for thus Jesus is glorified and we are truly blessed!
II. Now secondly, I want to show you that THE TEXT MAY BE VIEWED AS A PROMISE. He shall—these are three of the blessed "shalls" and "wills" of Christ—"He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you."
Come, dear child of God, and lay hold of this precious promise of Christ! If you get the promise of a man and you believe that he is an honest man, you value his promise. But here you have the promise of your God and Savior, Jesus Christ, the faithful Promiser, so you may well prize that! Are you not sometimes the subject of grave doubts as to whether you really glorify Christ? If so, fall back upon His blessed promise. The Holy Spirit in you shall glorify Christ, for He shall take of the things of Christ and shall show them to you. Possibly you fear that in the days to come, you will bring no glory to Christ. You know your own feebleness, your lack of talent and your lack of opportunity for glorifying Christ. You have cried many a time—
"Oh, for a thousand tongues to sing
My great Redeemers praise!
The glories of my God and King
The triumphs of His Grace!"
Yet you grieve that you cannot glorify Him and you are afraid that you never will be able to do so. Listen to this precious promise again—"He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you," even to you, though you are His poorest, weakest, meanest child! Though you will not be able to say much about it to others, you will glorify Christ by looking at Him as He is revealed to you by the Holy Spirit! We honor the sun as we look at it, or bask in its beams—I do not know what else we can do to show our appreciation of the sun but lie in the sunlight and thank God for letting the sun shine upon us. I have often thought of the lilies and the roses in the garden and of how they praise the God who made them. Not by singing, as the birds do, nor by lowing, like the cattle, nor by clapping their hands in joy and exultation like the trees of the woods do—the lilies and the roses praise God by just receiving from Him everything that they possess, drinking in His dew and rain and sunshine and standing there in all their beauty pouring out the fragrance that He has poured into them! And that is how you must glorify Christ, my Brothers and Sisters who are in Him. See Christ as the Spirit shows Him to you! Receive of His fullness, pour out the Grace that He has poured into you—and you shall in this way glorify Christ!
Now, Beloved, this promise is being daily fulfilled in all true Believers. God is being glorified in them by their sight of the Lord Jesus Christ as He is revealed to them by the Holy Spirit. As they walk to and from their daily work. As they sit down for a while to read their Bibles. As they kneel in prayer at their bedsides and are lost in wonder, love and praise at the Spirit's revelation of the beauties of Christ, Christ is being glorified by the Holy Spirit in them! Do not talk to me
of your fine "altars" studded with all manner of precious gems, with flowers, candles and images thereon. Do not tell me about your grand cathedrals with all the splendor of their architecture! The best altar in the world is a broken and a contrite heart and the truest cathedral is a soul that is rejoicing in the indwelling God! When the Holy Spirit comes and reveals Christ in the soul, there is the Altar, there is the Temple, there is the true worship for which God cares beyond all else—and that is really glorifying Christ!
As this promise is being thus constantly fulfilled, I am sure, Beloved, that it is most desirable that it should be more and more fulfilled and, therefore, I exhort you to plead it before God. Say, "Lord, will You graciously bid the Holy Spirit to glorify Christ in me and to reveal Christ to me more than He has ever yet done?" As you offer this prayer, if you really mean it, you will be more earnest than you have ever been in your meditation concerning Christ, in your searching of the Word to find out all that you can about Christ and in your fellowship with Christ. What a man truly prays for, he diligently seeks after until he obtains it if it really is in accordance with the will of God. If our minds are entirely occupied with the world, is it at all likely that the Spirit of God will show the things of Christ to us? We must give adequate space to the Spirit. We must give Him time and opportunities—putting other things away from us and placing our souls before the Spirit in a waiting and expectant attitude! As sensitive plates are put before that object which they are intended to reproduce, so let us be placed before the view of Christ which the Spirit of God desires to reveal to us— then the image of Christ shall be imprinted upon us and thus He will first be glorified by our seeing Him in the light that the Spirit sheds upon Him, and then He will be further glorified by others seeing His likeness reproduced in us!
I think I have clearly shown you that our text is a promise made by Christ to His disciples. And I have also shown you that it is a promise which ought to be pleaded at the Throne of Grace, so may I entreat every Christian here to really plead it? A promise is just like a check—but a check is of no real value unless it is taken to the bank and exchanged for cash. You know how we cash our checks—why do we not take God's promises to Him to have them fulfilled just as readily as we take man' s promises to the bank to have them fulfilled? I think that a good many long prayers which some consider very fine things, are merely exhibitions of uncertainty and unbelief. If I have a check about the genuineness of which there is some doubt—and I take it to the bank—it is probable that I shall be delayed some little time while there is a conversation between the clerks concerning it—a comparison of signatures, an examination of ledgers and ever so many other things. But if I have a genuine check about which there is no question whatever, what is the usual order of procedure? I go to the counter, put the check down, perhaps scarcely say a word except to indicate how I will take the change, pick up my sovereigns or bank notes and walk away! And that is how I like to pray—I ask God for what He has promised to give me. I believe that He will fulfill His promise and I go my way feeling sure that I have received that for which I asked! As a sensible man, when he has received from the bank clerk the change for his check, puts the money in his pocket and goes about his business, so should you act towards your God when you pray to Him. Say, "Lord, You have promised such-and-such a blessing to me. I come to You and plead Your own promise. And I believe that You will fulfill it to me." At all events, that is the way that I delight to pray.
You ask me, "Would you not be longer in prayer than that?" No, not on that one occasion. I shall probably be at the bank with another check, presently, so I cannot afford to take more time than is necessary with this one. You can do a great deal of business at this blessed bank if you do it quickly! But if you waste your time loitering at the counter and chatting with the clerk, that is not the way to honor the great Lord of the bank! Some people seem to think that in prayer, they must go through the Westminster Assembly's Confession of Faith, or some similar compendium of Doctrine—but that is not real praying. If, however, you will do your business with your God just as you would do your business with your banker, you will be sure to come back to Him again and again, for there is no man who does so much of this sacred business of pleading with God as the man who is most successful with Him! If you have succeeded once in prayer, I guarantee that you will pray again! And after a second time of successful pleading, you will pray a third time more easily and more confidently! And God will take care that you shall have plenty of reasons for praying! Only do make it real praying. Say, "Lord Jesus, You have said that the Holy Spirit shall glorify You by taking of Your things and showing them to Your people. I believe it, Lord. Let me prove it to be true at the Communion Table tonight! Let me prove it to be true in my private devotions all through this week! Let me prove it to be true all through this year and all through my life." Pray thus, and then, according to your faith shall it be unto you!
III. Now we shall think of the text in the last way which I indicated, AS A PRECEDENT FOR GLORIFYING CHRIST.
Brothers and Sisters in Christ, I know that a great number of you who are now present wish above all things that the Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in this world. And I also know that you who have tasted that the Lord is gracious have this for your highest ambition, that you may, by some means or other, by sickness or by health, by poverty or by wealth, by life or by death, bring glory to Him. Very well, then, that being the case, let this text be a guide to you in your efforts.
In order to glorify Christ, it seems, first, that it will be wisdom on your part to rely upon the Holy Spirit You say that you want to glorify Christ—that is also what the Holy Spirit wants to do! That is what He has long been doing and is still doing—therefore cast in your lot with Him—get Him to help you do the same work as He is doing. I have sometimes seen some young fellows rowing upstream, and it has been a heavy task to them. But there has come along a barge pulled quickly by horses, or better still, a steam launch, and the young men have called out to those on board, "Throw us a rope, please!" And then those who were before toiling in rowing have gone along easily enough. So, when I see the Spirit of God contending against all opposition—steaming upstream, as it were—in order to glorify Christ. As I need to go upstream, too, for the same purpose, I seek to act in connection with His Omnipotence, so that He may work with me and that I may be drawn onward and upward by His almighty power! My Sister, do not go to that Sunday school class of yours again until you have asked the Holy Spirit to go with you! My Brother, do not go up those pulpit stairs again, nor even up the stairs of that infirmary where you go visit the sick, or of that prison where you go to visit the inmates without first saying, "Spirit of God, it is Your business to glorify Christ and that is also my business—so will You graciously go with me and go in me? Give me the right words to utter and the right spirit in which to utter them. You and I are perfectly agreed in what we are seeking in this matter. Oh, work by me so that Jesus Christ may be glorified!"
I see also another thing in this precedent, which is that if I want to glorify Christ, I must first take care to apprehend Him clearly myself Two of Christ's declarations in the text show me this. The Holy Spirit does not glorify Christ till first He receives of the things of Christ—"He shall receive of Mine." And then He does not glorify Christ in us except by showing the things of Christ to us, so that if you and I want to glorify Christ, our first objective must be to see Him and to see His Glory for ourselves. You cannot, I think, do good to others to any great extent unless you are living in the light of God's Countenance. The Lord's general rule is first to give the provision into the disciples hands before those disciples are able to feed the multitude. Wait awhile, dear Brother, and go to your Lord and say to Him, "Lord, fill me with Your own fullness, for how can I hope to pour out to others till You have done so? Show me Yourself, for how can I describe You to others unless I have Your image very vividly revealed to my own mind and heart? If I am myself rejoicing in You, then shall I be able to tell others, with fluent tongue, how gracious You are. If I hear Your voice giving me a message to deliver from You, then shall I be able to tell the message with all the greater impressiveness and power because I received it first from You."
The next point is also clear from the precedent of the text—that is, in conjunction with the Holy Spirit, having ourselves apprehended Christ—if we want to glorify Christ, we must tell others about the things of Christ "You have said that already," says someone. Very well, then, if I have. I will say it again because I do not know anything that needs more to be said nowadays than this—that the way for any of us to glorify Jesus is to show to others the things of Jesus. How many congregations there are in which the greatest treat to the people would be a sermon about the Lord Jesus Christ and especially about His substitutionary Sacrifice! I have heard it said that there are thousands of sermons preached about the Gospel, but very few in which there is the Gospel, itself. This will not do! Souls will never be saved that way! Nobody has ever had his hunger satisfied by hearing a discourse about bread! It is bread, itself, that is needed to feed the hungry, so keep on, dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, giving the Bread of Life to starving souls! I know that many call us fools and say that we are the old stick-in-the-mud Puritans who never get any further—but never mind, dear Friends, what they say—keep on feeding the hungry! We do not mean to change our message even if all should reject it. Here we have stood, these many years, talking to you about Jesus Christ and Him Crucified—and if anybody heard us 20 years ago and shall come again now, he will hear just the same message as he heard then! Why do we not
make progress, as others do? Simply because there is nothing which we should regard as progress except progressing in the knowledge of this precious Truth of Jesus Christ and Him Crucified!
In the Infallible Truth of God, which has been revealed by the Holy Spirit, there is no possibility of progress or advance! He has been pleased to reveal the whole Truth, so there is nothing more to be revealed! We can continually search further and deeper into the Truth that has been revealed, and so may be enabled, by the help of the Spirit of God, to speak better concerning it, but better Truth we never shall have and "another Gospel" we never will declare! We should certainly be "accursed" if we did, for there is but one Gospel—and to that Gospel we shall remain steadfast, God helping us—even to the end. Hit that nail on the head again, Brother! Drive it in further and clinch it on the other side. Stick to the Gospel! It may be a long time before it wins, but it will win in the long run! Some say that it is going out of fashion, and that it is at a discount. We were told, the other day, that Calvinism is almost obsolete, but we do not mind what men say about it—we believe that it will yet see everything else obsolete! When modern culture has been blown away, like the thistledown from the side of the hill, the Gospel I have preached will stand like the eternal hills, themselves, outliving every opposition, for God Himself has piled this Truth like a mighty mountain and it shall stand fast till Christ Himself shall come! Not a jot or tittle of it shall ever pass away. The Holy Spirit glorifies Christ by taking of the things of Christ, so let us take care that we follow that precedent and glorify Christ in the same way!
But with regard to the things of Christ, of course the Holy Spirit glorifies Christ by explaining them, by showing them to us. So, Beloved, your business and mine is to make the things of Christ plain to people as far as we can. Show them to them—turn them first one way and then another—try and get them to see all of them that there is to be seen. You have not wasted your time if you have taught one child to read and understand one verse like this, "The Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which was lost." You have done something that was worth doing if you have only whispered into one human ear this short message, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved." In some way or other, keep on showing to saints and sinners the things of Christ! That will glorify Christ, somehow or other, both in them that are saved and in them that perish—and will be a sweet savor unto God in every place where Christ is made known! Keep on then, my dear fellow workers, at this blessed work of glorifying Christ!
There are many of you who are doing this under great discouragements, but I pray you not to leave off doing it. It is the Holy Spirit' s way to continue this work unceasingly, so let it be your way, also, as long as you live! But take care that the things which you show to others are the things which you have really received yourself. You must have experimental religion, or else you cannot tell of it to others with any hope that they will accept it. How idle it would be for me to come here to preach to you of a way of salvation which I had never tried and proved in my own experience! It would be as foolish as for a sick man to stand before a company of his fellow patients and recommend to them a medicine which he had never taken! Do not be guilty of such inconsistency, dear Friends, but live upon Christ! Get more and more of Christ into your soul and then you will be able to go and say to others, "We have found Him of whom Moses and the Prophets did write! We have found Him whom God has set forth to be the Propitiation for our sins, the Healer of all our wounds, the Comforter in all our woes." They will probably say to you, "What do you know about all this?" Then you will begin to tell how you were broken down on account of sin and how Jesus met with you in His mercy and saved you with His great salvation! As you tell the story, they will want to know more and more about it, for personal narratives are always interesting! And then you will, by-and-by, see the tears glistening in their eyes as one or another tremblingly asks, "Would Jesus save me in that way? I wonder if I went to Him and confessed my sin, whether I, too, would receive pardon and become a child of God." Then you would seize the golden opportunity and, laying a loving hand upon his shoulder, you would say, "Come, dear Friend, let us kneel down and pray together. Let us together seek that dear Savior who has said, 'Him that comes to Me I will in no wise cast out.'"
If you are moved to act and speak like that, I cannot tell how often God the Holy Spirit would glorify Christ by enabling you, first, to receive the things of Christ, yourself, and then to so show them to others that they would be moved to say, "We will go with you to the Cross of Calvary. We will go with you to the sinner's Savior. Where you were saved, there we, also, will be saved." How I wish that all in this congregation would make this resolve now through the effectual working of the ever-blessed Spirit, "Jesus is a great Savior! We will have Him as our Savior." How I wish that this sacred impulse might come upon all of us who are now in this building, that we might all be unhappy and unsatisfied until we found Christ! That is the way for you to glorify Christ, Sinner—not for you to bring Him any of your own goodness— but to go to Him and take of His goodness! Not for you to try to make yourself better, but to come to Him just as you are, and accept Him as your Savior, to be your Lord and Master forever!
May the Holy Spirit lead you to do so! Do it, blessed Spirit! You love to glorify Christ—here is Your opportunity in this vast congregation! Come and work this great work for Jesus' sake! Amen.
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