Wednesday, July 7, 2010

I enjoy Mr. Spurgeon and his brilliant insights into the biblical text. In drawing application from Psalm 68 and how God receives gifts and then gives gifts to His own (cf. Eph 4:7-8) Spurgeon provides some helpful thoughts.

I. The great blessings of the Christian ministry
1. Ministers are received for, and are given to, you by Christ. As men, and as sinful men, ministers are as nothing, and wish not to make anything of themselves; but, as the gifts of Christ, it behooves you to make much of them. If you love Christ, you will make much of your minister, on account of his being his gift--a gift designed to supply Christ's absence in a sort. If you fear God, you will be afraid of treating your pastor amiss, seeing he is the gift of Christ.

2. Ministers are not only given to, but received for you, of God the Father, as a covenant blessing, among the spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ. In this view, consider that Christ received nothing at his Father's hand but what cost him dear--cost him his life. Make much of the gift on this account.

3. Consider your unworthiness of such a blessing. you are men, mere men, and what is more, rebellious men, who had joined with Satan. And must you share the spoils? it is not usual to divide the spoils amongst rebels ... men that put him to death had these gifts given to them; and we should all have done the same.

4. The end of it: that the Lord might dwell among them. God dwells with his people by the means of ordinances and ministers. A church of Christ is God's house; and where any one builds a house, it is a token that he means to dwell there. What a blessing to a village, a country, for God to build a house in it. It is by this that we may hope for a blessing upon the means to the conversion of our children and friends, and for the edification of believers.

II. Some corresponding duties as answering to these your privileges.
1. Constant and diligent attendance at the house of God. If the house of God be God's dwelling, let it be yours, your home. If God gives you a pastor, do you thankfully receive and prize him. He hath not dealt so with every village.

2. Cheerfully contribute to his support. Christ has given you freely, and you ought to give him freely. Consider it is not a gift, but as a debt, and not as done to him, but to Christ.

3. Follow these things which make for peace, with which the presence and blessing of God are connected.

4. Shun those things that tend to provoke the Lord to withdraw his gifts, and to cease to dwell among you.

—Andrew Fuller's Sketch of a Sermon (from Spurgeon, Treasury of David, 1/3:161-62).


Dave said...

He always has a way of putting it! You want to do lunch on Friday?

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