Home > Gospel > Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” in all holy acts of love-liberty from a slavish fear of law

Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” in all holy acts of love-liberty from a slavish fear of law

5. Once more: “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” in all holy acts of love-liberty from a slavish fear of law. Many people are honest because they are afraid of the policeman. Many are sober because they are afraid of the eye of the public. Many persons are seemingly religious because of their neighbors. There is much virtue which is like the juice of the grape-it has to be squeezed before you get it; it is not like the generous drop of the honeycomb, distilling willingly and freely. I am bold to say, that if a man be destitute of the grace of God, his works are only works of slavery, he feels forced to do them. I know before I came into the liberty of the children of God, if I went to God’s house, I went because I thought I must do it; if I prayed, it was because I feared some misfortune would happen in the day if I did not; if I ever thanked God for a mercy, it was because I thought I should not get another if I were not thankful; if I performed a righteous deed it was with the hope that very likely God would reward me at last, and I should be winning some crown in heaven. A poor slave, a mere Gibeonite, hewing wood and drawing water. If I could have left off doing it, I should have loved to do so. If I could have had my will, there would have been no chapel-going for me, no religion for me-I would have lived in the world and followed the ways of Satan if I could have done as I pleased. As for righteousness, it was slavery; sin would have been my liberty. But now, Christian, what is your liberty? What makes you come to the house of God to day?

Love made your willing feet

In swift obedience move.”

What makes you bend your knee in prayer? It is because you like to talk with your Father who seeth in secret. What is it that opens your purses, and makes you give liberally? It is because you love the poor children of God, and you feel, so much being given to you, that it is a privilege to give something back to Christ. What is it that constrains you to live honestly, righteously, and soberly; Is it the fear of the jail? No; you might pull the jail down; you might annihilate the Convict settlements; you might hurl all

chains into the sea; and we should be just as holy as we are now. Some people say, “Then, sir, you mean to say that Christians may live as they like.” I wish they could, sir. If I could live as I liked, I would, always live holily. If a Christian could live as he liked, he would always live as he ought. It is a slavery to him to sin; righteousness is his delight. Oh! if I could but live as I list, I would list to live as I ought. If I could but live as I would I would live as God commands me. The greatest happiness of a Christian is to be holy. It is no slavery to him. Put him where you will, he will not sin, Expose him to any temptation, if it were not for that evil heart still remaining, you would never find him sinning. Holiness is his pleasure; sin is his slavery. Ah ye poor bondsmen who come to church and chapel because ye must; ah! ye poor slavish moralists that are honest because of the gyves, and sober because of the prison, ah! ye poor slaves! We are not so; we are not under the law, but under grace. Call us Antinomians if you will; we will even glory in the scandalous title; we are freed from the law, but we are freed from it that we may obey it more than ever we did. The true-born child of God serves his Master more than ever he did. As old Erskine says:-

Slight now his loving presence if they can;

No, no; his conquering kindness leads the van.

When everlasting love exerts the sway,

They judge themselves most kindly bound to obey;

Bound by redeeming love in stricter sense,

Than ever Adam was in innocence.”

Charles H. Spurgeon- Spiritual Liberty, A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, February 18, 1855

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