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Posts Tagged ‘Christ’s Death’

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

The Wednesday Word: He Suffered Once!

January 30, 2019 2 comments

1 Peter 3:18; “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God.”

A missionary was speaking to a remote tribe of people who had never heard about Jesus. Seated in the front row, listening intently to all the missionary had to say, was the chief of the tribe.

As the story of Christ came to its climax and the chief heard how our Saviour was cruelly crucified, he could restrain himself no longer. He jumped up and cried, “Stop! Take Him down from the cross! I belong there, not Him!”

He had grasped the meaning of the Gospel; he understood that he was a sinner and that Christ was the sinless One who died in his place.

The greatest truth in the universe is that Jesus, our Saviour, suffered and died for our sins in order to bring us to God. Spurgeon said of this truth, “It is meat to my soul. I can feed on it every day and all the day.”

Our sins were so hideous and horrible there was nothing God could do but put us in hell unless a sin-bearing substitute could be found. But where could He find a sinless substitute? All had sinned and fallen short of His glory (1 Kings 8:46, Job 15:6). All deserved eternal death. So in love, grace and mercy, the Sovereign God came here Himself in the person of His Son. He was and is the God/Man. He is not a mixture of both man and God. He is the full perfection of both. He was not a demi-God who was less than God and more than man. He was fully God yet fully man. Great is the mystery of Godliness (1 Timothy3:16).

He came down from heaven to become one of us. What a demonstration of love! What a parade of condescension. Yet not condescension, for there was no destain in His attitude towards us. He came alongside us … no, no, wait a minute … not alongside but below us. Philippians 2:7 says, He “made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men”

Then, He took our place and died instead of us. Can you affirm this for yourself?

Our sins had sprung from deep within us and seeped through our being like a toxic pollutant. Our sins, past, present and future, had to be purged by precious blood, saving blood (Hebrew 1:3).

So, let’s read our text again; “Christ also hath once suffered for sins.”

Once! What a great Gospel word. When Christ died for our sins it was a unique event that has never needed to be repeated.

The priestly sacrifices for sin in the Old Testament Temple had to be repeated daily but Christ made the perfect sacrifice once and for all time when He offered Himself (Hebrews 7:27).

Christ was once and for all time offered to bear the sin of many (Hebrews 9:28).

We are sanctified through the offering of the body of Christ once and for all (Hebrews 10:10).

When Christ died, He died once and for all (Romans 6:10)

What a saviour! Our guilt brought suffering upon Christ, but His suffering brought us to God.

Christ’s sufferings were;

1. Unique, “Once for all.”

2. Vicarious. “The just for the unjust”

3. Entirely Effective. “That He might bring us to God.”

No condemnation now I dread:

Jesus and all in Him is mine!

Alive in Him, my living Head,

And clothed in righteousness divine,

Bold I approach the eternal throne,

And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

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: Barabbas and the Gospel

December 5, 2018 6 comments

And so Pilate, … released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, … to be crucified (Mark 15:6-15).

Pilate freed Barabbas, the felon, and sent Jesus to the cross.

Pilate, as you remember, had no love for Barabbas, but wanted to save Jesus. So, he hit on the idea of offering the people a choice between the two men. It was customary to free a prisoner at the time of the Feast of Passover; so, Pilate asked the crowd, “Which of the two do you want me to release?” (Matthew 27:21-22).

He was astonished when the people enthusiastically called out, “Barabbas!”

Who was Barabbas?

To the Romans, Barabbas was a terrorist who had committed murder during a rebellion (Mark 15:7). John adds that Barabbas was also a robber (John 18:40).

The name Barabbas is interesting. It means “son of the father.” Some suggest that it means son of a Rabbi. If so, Barabbas was a preacher’s kid! … and so was John Wesley Hardin…one of the most notorious killers of the Wild West.

Barabbas had been condemned to die. He was a rebel against the law, a robber and a murderer. And now the outraged law had apprehended him and he’s on Death Row.

BTW,…everyone reading this who has not come to Christ as a hell-deserving sinner looking for mercy is sitting on death row. You are not on probation but under damnation.

Suddenly, people were calling his name, “Barabbas! Barabbas!” The next thing he heard was a crowd yelling, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”

Perhaps, he thinks it’s a lynch mob. He’s terrified. Then, he hears the prison door slowly opening and a bewildered guard said, “Barabbas! There’s a man named Jesus who is going to die in your place. He is going to be nailed to your cross. You are free to go.

As Barabbas emerged from the jail, the crowd was surging toward Calvary. And legend has it that Barabbas followed them. Think of it, he hears the hammer and knows that the blows that are fastening Jesus to the cross were meant for him. He knows that, quite literally, he, Barabbas, is the one who should be executed.

Barabbas, as he looked at Jesus on the cross, must have received a clear understanding of the Gospel. He must have thought,

“That man took my place.

I am the one who should have died.

I am the condemned murderer.

That man did nothing wrong.

He is dying instead of me.”

Barabbas sees Christ upon his cross. After that, he had no need to go to seminary to understand the Doctrine of Substitution.

Barabbas knew that he was a guilty, worthless wretch, under the condemnation of the law.

Barabbas saw the meaning of the cross. Jesus was actually dying in his place. Barabbas would have known that he had done nothing whatever to deserve Christ dying in his place. He knew that Christ’s death for Him was an act of pure, undeserved grace.

Because of the cross, Barabbas was free from the penalty of the Law. Suppose a soldier had recognized Barabbas and tried to arrest him. He legally could not have done it! Barabbas was a free man. The substitute had died in his place.

All Barabbas would have needed to say was ‘Jesus has died for me.’ Likewise, when the Law points its condemning finger and says we’re guilty…we point toward Jesus and say…He died for me….and I am free!

Remember this, if sin speaks louder in our conscience than Christ, it is because we have taken our eyes off the Gospel.

To be frank, I’ve never liked Barabbas. I wanted the crowd to yell,

“Release Jesus!”

“Crucify Barabbas!”

But instead, they roared for the opposite.

Barabbas, a villain, was set free and Jesus took his place. I hate that.

But, when I look inside myself I realize I am Barabbas. I’m in the same shoes. And you are Barabbas, too. We’re the guilty ones. We’re the scoundrels, but we go free because Jesus died in our place.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com