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I shall, in speaking of the gospel rejected, endeavor to point out the two classes of persons

February 18, 2019 Leave a comment

I shall, in speaking of the gospel rejected, endeavor to point out the two classes of persons who equally despise the truth. The Jews make it a stumblingblock, and the Greeks account it foolishness. Now these two very respectable gentlemen-the Jew and the Greek-I am not going to make these ancient individuals the object of my condemnation, but I look upon them as members of a great parliament, representatives of a great constituency, and I shall attempt to show that if all the race of Jews were cut off, there would be still a “rest number in the world who would answer to the name of Jews, to whom Christ is a stumblingblock; and that if Greece were swallowed up by some earthquake, and ceased to be a nation, there would still be the Greek Unto whom the gospel would be foolishness. I shall simply introduce the Jew and the Greek; and let them speak a moment to you, in order that you may see the gentlemen who represent you; the representative men; the persons who stand for many of you, who as yet are not called by divine grace.

Charles H. Spurgeon- “Christ Crucified,” A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, February 11, 1855

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A Gospel Rejected

February 11, 2019 Leave a comment

There are three things in the text. First, a gospel rejected — “Christ, crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block, and to the Greeks foolishness;” secondly, a gospel triumphant — “unto those which are called, both Jews and Greeks;” and thirdly, a gospel admired-it is to them who are called “the power of God; and the wisdom of God.”

I. First, we have here A GOSPEL REJECTED. One would have imagined that when God sent his gospel to men, all men would meekly listen, and humbly receive its truths. We should have thought that God’s ministers had but to proclaim that life is brought to light by the gospel, and that Christ is come to save sinners, and every ear would be attentive, every eye would be fixed, and every heart would be wide open to receive the truth. We should have said, judging favourably of our fellow-creatures, that there would not exist in the world a monster so vile, so depraved, so polluted, as to put so much as a stone in the way of the progress of truth; we could not have conceived such a thing; yet that conception is the truth. When the gospel was preached, instead of being accepted and admired, one universal hiss went up to heaven; men could not bear it; its first Preacher they dragged to the brow of the hill, and would have sent him down headlong: yea, they did more, they nailed him to the cross, and there they let him languish out his dying life in agony such as no man hath borne since. All his chosen ministers have been hated and abhorred by worldlings; instead of being listened to, they have been scoffed at; treated as if they were the offscouring of all things, and the very scum of mankind. Look at the holy men in the old times, how they were driven from city to city, persecuted, afflicted, tormented, stoned to death wherever the enemy had power to do so. Those friends of men, those real philanthropists, who came with hearts big with love, and hands full of mercy, and lips pregnant with celestial fire, and souls that burned with holy influence; those men were treated as if they were spies in the camp, as if they were deserters from the common cause of mankind; as if they were enemies, and not, as they truly were, the best of friends. Do not suppose, my friends, that men like the gospel any better now, than they did then. There is an idea that you are growing better. I do not believe it. You are growing worse. In many respects men may be better-outwardly better-but the heart within is still the same. The human heart of to-day dissected, would be just like the human heart a thousand years ago: the gall of bitterness within that breast of yours, is just as bitter as the gall of bitterness in that of Simon of old. We have in our hearts the same latent opposition to the truth of God; and hence we find men even as of old, who scorn the gospel.

Charles H. Spurgeon- “Christ Crucified,” A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, February 11, 1855

There is no such a thing as preaching Christ and him crucified, unless you preach what now-a-days is called Calvinism

Before I enter upon our text, let 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 our people a batch of philosophy every Sunday morning and evening, and neglect the truth 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 a 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; nor 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 do I think we can 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.”

Charles H. Spurgeon- “Christ Crucified,” A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, February 11, 1855

Foolishness shall overcome wisdom; now ignorance, shall sweep away your science

January 28, 2019 1 comment

Wisdom had had its time, and time enough; it had done its all, and that was little enough; it had made the world worse than it was before it stepped upon it, and now, says God, “Foolishness shall overcome wisdom; now ignorance, as ye call it, shall sweep away your science; now, humble, childlike faith, shall crumble to the dust all the colossal systems your hands have piled.” He calls his army. Christ puts his trumpet to his mouth, and up come the warriors, clad in fisherman’s garb, with the brogue of the lake of Galilee-poor humble mariners. Here are the warriors, O wisdom! that are to confound thee; these are the heroes who shall overcome thy proud philosophers! these men are to plant their standard upon the ruined walls of thy strongholds, and bid them fall for ever; these men, and their successors, are to exalt a gospel in the world which ye may laugh at as absurd, which ye may sneer at as folly, but which shall be exalted above the hills, and shall be glorious even to the highest heavens. Since that day, God has always raised up successors of the apostles. I claim to be a successor of the apostles, not by any lineal descent, but because I have the same role and charter as any apostle, and am as much called to preach the gospel as Paul himself: if not as much owned in the conversion of sinners, yet in a measure, blessed of God; and, therefore, here I stand, foolish as Paul might be, foolish as Peter, or any of those fisherman, but still with the might of God I grasp the sword of truth-coming here to “preach Christ and him crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.”

Charles H. Spurgeon- “Christ Crucified,” A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, February 11, 1855

WHAT contempt hath God poured upon the wisdom of this world

But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.”- 1 Corinthians 1:23, 24.

WHAT contempt hath God poured upon the wisdom of this world! How hath he brought it to nought, and made it appear as nothing. He has allowed it to work out its own conclusions, and prove its own folly. Men boasted that they were wise; they said that they could find out God to perfection; and in order that their folly might be refuted once and for ever, God gave them the opportunity of so doing. He said “Worldly wisdom, I will try thee. Thou sayest that thou art mighty, that thine intellect is vast and comprehensive, that thine eye is keen, that thou canst unravel all secrets; now, behold, I try thee: I give thee one great problem to solve. Here is the universe; stars make its canopy, fields and flowers adorn it, and the floods roll over its surface; my name is written therein; the invisible things of God may be clearly seen in the things which are made. Philosophy, I give thee this problem-find me out. Here are my works-find me out. Discover in the wondrous world which I have made, the way to worship me acceptably. I give thee space enough to do it-there are data enough. Behold the clouds, the earth, and the stars. I give thee time enough; I will give thee four thousand years and I will not interfere; but thou shalt do as thou wilt with thine own world. I will give thee men in abundance, for I will make great minds and vast, whom thou shalt call lords of earth; thou shalt have orators, thou shalt have philosophers. Find me out, O reason, find me out, O wisdom; discover my nature, if thou canst: find me out unto perfection, if thou art able; and if thou canst not, then shut thy mouth for ever, and then I will teach thee that the wisdom of God is wiser than the wisdom of man; yea that the foolishness of God is wiser than men.” And how did the reason of man work out the problem? How did wisdom perform her feat? Look upon the heathen nations; there you see the result of wisdom’s researches. In the time of Jesus Christ, you might have beheld the earth covered with the slime of pollution-a Sodom on a large scale, corrupt, filthy, depraved, indulging in vices which we dare not mention, revelling in lusts too abominable even for our imagination to dwell upon for a moment. We find the men prostrating themselves before blocks of wood and stone, adoring ten thousand gods more vicious than themselves. We find, in fact, that reason wrote out her own depravity with a finger covered with blood and filth, and that she for ever cut herself out from all her glory, by the vile deeds she did. She would not worship God. She would not bow down to him who is “clearly seen” but she worshipped any creature; the reptile that crawled, the crocodile, the viper, everything might be a god, but not, forsooth, the God of Heaven. Vice might be made into a ceremony, the greatest crime might be exalted into a religion, but true worship she knew nothing of. Poor reason! poor wisdom! How art thou fallen from heaven! Like Lucifer-thou son of the morning thou art lost. Thou has written out thy conclusion, but it is a conclusion of consummate folly. “After that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”

Charles H. Spurgeon- “Christ Crucified,” A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, February 11, 1855

The Wednesday Word: 12 Marks of the Grace Believer!

September 2, 2015 1 comment

1. Grace Believers trust that they are saved entirely and utterly by someone else, the Lord Jesus Christ. They believe that their sole qualification for salvation is found, not in their worthiness, but in their unworthiness. The Grace Believer sees Christ as his complete acceptance before God (Philippians 3:4-9). The Grace Believer holds that Christ alone is his saviour. He believes, like the faithful of other generations that,“There is no Priest but Christ, no Sacrifice but Calvary, no Confessional but the Throne of Grace and no Authority but the Word of God.”

2. Grace Believers understand, along with the greats of the past, that to know Christ and Him crucified is not the minimum of spiritual knowledge but the maximum. The Grace believer knows that all doctrines find their hub in Christ Crucified. All doctrines indeed lead to and from the Christ of the cross. All teaching, responsibilities, and Christian activities find their centre in Christ Crucified. In Christ alone, the Grace Believer discovers the treasures of wisdom, knowledge and spiritual understanding (Isaiah 45:3; Colossians 2:3).

3. Grace Believers, as they grow in grace, rather than become self-satisfied and hard spirited, continue to develop in their understanding of their lack of worth. As the gospel-hammer breaks them, they increase in the comprehension that they receive favour, not because of themselves, but because of being in Christ! They understand that Christ’s worthiness is the source of all their blessings (1 Corinthians 4:7).

4.Grace Believers know that they have the full favour of God, not because of any works they have done or are doing. They have the full favour of God because of Christ alone. By faith, they grasp that the Father is well pleased with them and indeed rejoices over them. (Zephaniah 3:17) Indeed, the Father cannot be more delighted with His people than he already is. Grace Believers know they are not accepted by having their own righteousness which comes by fulfilling rules and regulations. They are in Christ and have Christ’s entire righteousness credited and reckoned to them (see Philippians 3:9).

5. As they grow in grace, Grace Believers refuse to make resolutions, vows and pledges to enable them to serve God in a fuller way. Grace Believers put no confidence in the flesh (Philippians 3:3).

6. Grace Believers are not so foolish as to try self-improvement techniques. Instead, they focus on Christ and his glory. They know that change comes from looking outside themselves to the glorious person of Christ. They rejoice in 2 Corinthians 3:18; “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord”.

7. Grace Believers are confident of God’s past, present and future grace, yet they refuse to make a practice of abusing that grace. Grace, not Law teaches them to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts. Grace, not law, teaches them to live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world (Titus 2:11-12).

8. Grace Believers are learning to not get permanently discouraged with their performance. Instead, they are learning to focus on Christ and His performance on their behalf. One of the Grace Believer’s theme songs could be;

“It is finished!” yes, indeed,

Finished, every jot;
Believer, this is all you need,
Tell me, is it not?
Till to Jesus’ work we cling

By a simple faith,
“Doing” is a deadly thing—
“Doing” ends in death.
I’ll cast my deadly “doing” down—

Down at Jesus’ feet;
I stand in Him, in Him alone,
Gloriously complete.

9. The Grace Believer is so reduced by the sight of himself as a wretch … a sight graciously granted by the Holy Spirit in a non-condemning manner … that he soon discovers he has no room to practice arrogance and pride.

10. The Grace Believer holds that devotion to God arises, not from an obligation to repay God. On the contrary, the Grace Believer knows that we love God because He first loved us (1 John 4:19). Devotion to God comes through the gospel.

11. The Grace Believer does not believe that blessings come as the result of our acts of consecration to God. That is to reverse God’s order. That is to teach law and not gospel. The Legalist makes man’s blessing depend on his personal dedication and devotion. Also, the legalist insists that the more we consecrate ourselves to God the greater will flow the blessing. According to his scheme, we move the hand of God by our works. To think like this, however, is to remove ourselves from the enjoyments of gospel blessings. This is to cease to look to Christ alone as our only acceptance before God.

12. The Grace Believer knows that grace has not made us a debtor to God. The Grace Believer does not try to repay the debt of grace he feels he owes. The Grace Believer holds that God, in giving His grace, did not put us into any contract with accompanying clauses and conditions. It is grace that saves and grace alone. It is faith alone which receives that which Grace alone in the person of Christ alone has accomplished. The Grace Believer does not serve God because he feels he owes God something. Rather, he serves God because He loves God and he loves God because God first loved Him.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

The Wednesday Word: Saved to the Uttermost: Part 2

‘Wherefore, He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever lives to make intercession for them.”—Hebrews 7:25.

Here is some excellent news; Christ Jesus, our great High Priest, has been entrusted with full authority and power to save all for whom He died. He is able to save to the uttermost. Many a doctor has wanted to save a patient, but has not been capable of doing so. Many parents have been willing to transfer the suffering of their child to themselves, but were unable to. The will was there, but there was no ability. Do we think Christ is like that?

Here’s the gospel truth; the Lord Jesus is not merely willing to save; He doesn’t just try to save or do His best to save, but He actually saves to the uttermost all who come to God by Him.

Christ Jesus succeeds where everyone else fails! He saves to the uttermost. He saves with an all-sufficient omnipotence. He takes us at our worst and saves us completely … or as one old-time Irish preacher used to say, “He saves us from the guttermost to the uttermost.”

Because He saves to the uttermost, He sacrificed Himself on Calvary. Because He saves to the uttermost, He made full satisfaction for our sins. Because He saves to the uttermost, He intercepted the wrath of God which was headed straight at us. Because He saves to the uttermost, He rose from the grave. Because He saves to the uttermost, He ascended into Heaven. Because He saves to the uttermost, He now makes constant intercession for us.

 

He is the Great High priest who saves to the uttermost.

Because He is our High Priest, He saves from the uttermost of guilt.

Because He is our High Priest, He saves from the uttermost of condemnation.

Because He is our High Priest, He saves from the uttermost of damnation.

Because He is our High Priest, He saves from the uttermost of death.

He is able to save to the uttermost!

 

What a staggering gospel. At the cross, Christ was the victim, at the resurrection He was the victor. Christ died, Christ has risen, Christ has ascended to the right hand of the Father and ever lives to make intercession for us (Romans 8:34). He saves to the uttermost! Having obtained eternal redemption for us at Calvary, He now applies the blessings of His accomplishments from the Holy of Holies. He is alive with the power of an endless life and thus guarantees that we will realize the full benefits and blessings of His sacrifice. He ever-lives and because of that endless life we have the pledge that we will be saved to the uttermost by Him.

As the Hymn writer wrote,

 

“Five bleeding wounds He bears, received on Calvary;

They pour effectual prayers they strongly plead for me;

“Forgive Him O forgive,” they cry,

“That ransomed sinner must not die.”

 

Christ saves all who come to God by Him. He saves completely with an exhaustive, all-encompassing salvation. The Christ of the cross is now the High Priest and King of Heaven. He is perfectly suited to those who cannot save themselves because He is able to save to the uttermost. Christ Jesus died on the cross, but unlike the priests of the Old Covenant, his death did not signal a cessation of His ministry. Christ Jesus rose from the dead and entered glory as our great High Priest. In Him, we are presented before the Father. He is the guarantee that we will never perish. He saves to the uttermost!

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles McKee

 

Minister of the Gospel

The Grace Centre

6 Quay Street, New Ross,

County Wexford, Ireland.

www.milesmckee.com 

We are currently in the United States, preaching Christ Crucified, and telling people of our growing gospel work in Ireland, the UK and other areas. We are asking Lord to raise up additional partners to join with us in our on-going gospel crusade. Please pray that we find more people to stand with us financially.

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