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1986. The Child Of Light Walking In Light

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No. 1986-33:553. A Sermon Delivered On Lord’s Day Morning, October 2, 1887, By C. H. Spurgeon, At The Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.

If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not say the truth: but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin. {1Jo 1:6,7}

For other sermons on this text:
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 223, “Evil and Its Remedy, The” 216}
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 663, “Walking in the Light and Washed in the Blood” 654}
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1986, “Child of Light Walking in Light, The” 1987}
   Exposition on 1Jo 1:1-2:6 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2905, “Fellowship with the Father and the Son” 2906 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Ps 130:1-8 1Jo 1:1-2:2 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 3269, “Frail Leaf, A” 3271 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Ps 130; 1Jo 1:4-7 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 3460, “Praise Comely to the Upright” 3462 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Ps 33 1Jo 1 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2424, “New Song on Earth, The” 2425 @@ "Exposition"}

1. The apostle warns us against saying more than we have made our own by experience. He hints at the solemn difference between empty profession and gracious reality. To have fellowship with God is a great matter; but merely to say that we have fellowship with him is a totally different thing. John warns us that if we say what our characters do not support, we lie. He leaves it just so, without a word of softening or excuse. Between saying and being, between saying and doing, there may be all the difference in the world. There is a tendency among men, if there is a good experience, to say that they possess it; if there is a high privilege of grace, to say that they are enjoying it. What a folly this is! It is akin to madness. To unsound minds a precious original suggests a desire to fashion an imitation. To the untruthful mind the genuine is an invitation to be the counterfeit. Let us be on our guard so that we do not flatter ourselves into saying more than is true. Let us not stretch our arm beyond our sleeve, nor boast beyond our ability. Every profession will be tried with fire; let us, therefore, see to it that we put in no claim which will not endure the most severe test.

2. There were certain people in John’s day who said, “We have fellowship with God.” How they had come by it they did not explain; perhaps they claimed to have reached it by philosophical speculation, by exact reasoning, or by long-continued meditation. Whatever the road, they said that they had reached the city of God, and were in communion with the Great Being. John saw that they walked in darkness, rejecting the light of divine revelation from above and the pure light of the Holy Spirit within; he also saw that they themselves were not true, and that their lives were not pure, and therefore he warned those who were speaking and acting a lie. Their life was a lie, for they were not walking in the truth; and their profession that they had fellowship with God was another lie, for God can have no fellowship with falsehood. “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all”; and, therefore, he cannot hold any communion with darkness. John draws the lines very tightly, and judges with unflinching fidelity: he is not inclined to the boasted charity of latitudinarianism, but he curtly dismisses false claims with that plain word “lie.” The disciple whom Jesus loved spoke like the Son of Thunder that he was, when he had to deal with shams. It is the part of true love to be honest, and to expose what would be injurious to those it loves. He who will gloss over a falsehood loves in word only. Learn, then, that if men boast about fellowship with God, and do not receive the revelation of his word, they lie, and do not know the truth.

3. Let us now speak of the real thing, the fellowship with God which comes by walking in the light. The Christian life is described as walking, which implies activity. Christian life feeds upon contemplation, but it displays itself in action. Fellowship with God necessitates action: since to be with God we must “walk with God.” The living God is not inactive, motionless, aimless. “My Father,” says Jesus, “works so far, and I work.” Chiefly in the character of active workers or in that of willing sufferers we must maintain fellowship with God. Walking implies activity; but it must be of a continuous kind. Neither this step, nor that, nor the next, can make a walk. We must be moving onward and onward, and remain in that exercise, or we cease from walking. Holy walking includes perseverance in obedience, and continuance in service. Not he who begins, but he who continues is the true Christian; final perseverance enters into the very essence of the believer’s life: the true pilgrims of Zion go from strength to strength. From strength to strength, did I say? This suggests that walking implies progress. He who takes one step and another step, and still stands where he was, has not walked. There is such a thing as the goose-step, and I am afraid many Christians are wonderfully familiar with it: they are just where they used to be, and are half inclined to congratulate themselves upon that fact, since they might have backslidden. They have not advanced in the heavenly pilgrimage, and how can they be said to walk? My hearer, is your life a walk with God and towards God? If so, our subject has to do with you. May the Spirit of all grace lead us into the heart of it!

4. The things we shall consider this morning will arise out of the text in the following order: First, the light of our walk: “if we walk in the light, as he is in the light.” Secondly, the communion of our walk: “we have fellowship with each other.” Thirdly, the glory of that communion: “the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin.”

5. I. Consider, first, THE LIGHT OF OUR WALK.

6. True believers do not walk in darkness; they have found the road, and they see it before them. They know whom they have believed, and why they have believed, and so they go forward intelligently. How unhappy are those who are sure of nothing but a groping for the way, and wandering in endless circles of hope and fear! True believers walk onward, because a light shows them their path, and makes them sure of safety and progress. What is meant by walking in the light? It is somewhat exceptional that last Sunday morning our subject was “The Child of Light Walking in Darkness.” {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1985, “The Child of Light Walking in Darkness” 1986} That darkness is very different from the darkness with which we deal this morning. Children of light may for a time walk in the darkness of sorrow; but they have been delivered from the darkness of untruthfulness, ignorance, sin, and unbelief. In these respects the darkness is past, and the true light now shines. Moral darkness is contrary to their new-born nature: they cannot endure it. We must distinguish between things that differ, between the darkness of sorrow and the darkness of sin. A metaphor may be used for many purposes, and that of darkness has a wide range of meaning.

7. What is this light, then, in which the Christian walks? I answer, first, it is the light of grace. In our natural state we are in darkness, and under the dominion of the Prince of Darkness. The apostle says of us Gentiles, “Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart.” When the grace of God comes, the dayspring from on high visits us. The Holy Spirit brings us out from under the dominion of the old nature by creating within us a new life, and he brings us out from under the tyranny of the Prince of Darkness by opening our eyes to see and our minds to understand celestial truth. The opening of our blind eyes and the pouring in of the light of truth are from the Lord. This is a work in which he is as fully seen in the glory of his Godhead as when in the natural creation he said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. The entrance of God’s word into the mind by the power of the Holy Spirit gives us light as for ourselves, our sin, and our danger. With this comes light concerning the way of salvation through Jesus Christ, and light as for the mind of God concerning our sanctification. True knowledge takes the place of ignorance, and a desire for purity becomes supreme over the love of sin. Paul says, “You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.” We accept the revelation of God in the inspired Book; by the attending witness of the Holy Spirit it becomes a revelation of God to our own hearts; and so all our position — our past, present, and future — is set in a new light. With the driving out of our natural darkness old things pass away, and with the coming in of the divine light all things become new. Blessed is that man to whom the eternal light has come by the effective working of the Spirit of God, who brings to us the light by which we see God, and Christ, and life everlasting! This is the secret beginning of all our light: “God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shone into our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”

8. The result of this light is seen in various ways. It causes deep sorrow in the beginning, for its first discoveries are grievous to the conscience. Light is painful to eyes long accustomed to darkness. Immediately the light brings great joy, for the soul perceives deliverance from the evils which it mourned. So light and gladness in the end go together, as it is written, “Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart.” Always, in each condition, you observe conspicuously that the light of grace is seen as the light of sincerity. Until grace comes into our souls we have no heart for the things of God. We may be fussily religious so far as to be attentive to every outward form of worship; but there is no heart-work, no light of truth in all our devotion. But when once the divine light comes in, then we become intensely real in our dealings with God. Hypocrisy and pretence flee before sincere belief and feeling. “Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable sinners,” no longer passes our lips flippantly and thoughtlessly; but we are indeed miserable on account of sin. When we seek for mercy we mean it, and do not play at confession and repentance. Our eye is single, and our whole body is full of light: we see what we are doing, and arouse ourselves to do it in earnest. We know what we are praying about, and there is no question concerning the deep sincerity of our cries and tears. We desire with the whole force of our nature to find pardon and acceptance through the precious blood of Christ. We do not merely say that we desire salvation and eternal life; but we feel that we must have them, and cannot be denied. We cease from playing fast and loose with God. We no longer halt between two opinions, but one thing we seek after, desiring it from the Lord: we would be right with God in all respects. The man who is walking in the light is thoroughly sincere. The shadows of pretence have been chased away: he is in downright earnest in all that he does. Oh my hearers, many of you have never come so far as this; though this alone is not far. By being in a place of worship you show an outward respect for divine things; but are you worshipping God? Did you worship him just now in the prayer and in the praise? You are listening to me while I talk about the highest things that ever occupied the human mind, but do you long to be a partaker of these things? Do you hunger and thirst after righteousness? Those who are walking in the light are free from pretence, and are living in real earnest: is it so with you? Contentment with unreality is a sign of dwelling in darkness. Careful keeping up of shams, diligent puffing out of wind-bags, and constant creation, of make-believes — all this is of the night and its dreams; but to be what you seem to be, to be true in all the phases of your life, this is surely seen in those who walk in the light of God. What can God have to do with shams? What does he care for empty professions? Everything must be true which is to come under his eye.

9. Next to sincerity I regard a willingness to know and to be known as an early result of walking in the light of God. The ungodly do not come to the light, lest their deeds should be reproved. There are matters about which they desire no light, but rather say, “Depart from us, we do not desire the knowledge of your ways.” Where ignorance affords them a present peace they consider it folly to be wise. Alas! it is too commonly the case that men have no inclination to obtain a knowledge which might involve humiliation, repentance, and a retracing of steps. “Leave well enough alone,” they cry. How many will say, “Well, we have been Christians according to our own way for a good many years, why do we need to question ourselves?” They look at a faithful preacher with suspicion: he comes a good deal too close to home. When he begins to deal with the heart and conscience, they look at him as if he were a dog hunting around for a rat. Truly the comparison is a good one; for wherever there is a self-satisfaction which is afraid of light, we suspect that the rat of hypocrisy is not far off. Beloved, we must not rest content with anything which will not bear the light of day. A religion which we will not submit to the test of self-examination cannot be worth much. No one is afraid to have a genuine sovereign submitted to any test: it is the coiner who is afraid. “Look!” says a man, “I hold a certain creed; my grandmother held it; it has come down to me as an heirloom. You invite me to examine that creed by the Word of God, but I would rather not. I am not disposed to learn anything which might cause me to change. If you speak too strongly I shall go and hear someone else, for I cannot bear to be disturbed.” This is a foolish prejudice, is it not? Yes, and it may prove the man’s ruin. This is the kind of thing that makes a man go out angrily from a sermon, and say, “I will not listen to that man again; he is too personal, and too severe.” Indeed, friend, can anyone who loves your soul be too severe? Do you wish to be flattered? Do you not know that plain dealing is more precious than rubies? Would you not say to your physician, “Put me under the severest examination, and let me know the truth?” Would you pay him a fee so that he might deceive you? As for your soul, do you not desire to know the very worst of your case? If you would rather be comfortable than be safe, then you and I are not of one mind; for I want to walk in the light, free from deception, knowing truly and thoroughly my own place before the heart-searching God. I would rather not cry, “Peace peace,” where there is no peace. The comfort which grows out of a delusion I do not desire. Brethren, we must build on truth, and nothing else but truth.

10. When men walk in the light they cease to take things for granted, and look below the surface. Certain things have been labelled with the mark of truth, and have passed as genuine; but men who are in the light disregard the labels, and look at the goods themselves. We cannot afford to risk our souls on hearsay: we need personal knowledge. For one, I desire a salvation which will bear the test of the closest examination. I would be saved in such a way that I am neither afraid of conscience, nor of death, nor of the judgment seat of God. I would be saved in the light. I would be known and read by all men, and I would know even as I am known. We wish to conceal nothing; we can conceal nothing, “for all things are naked and open to the eyes of him with whom we have to deal.” We would lay bare our hearts and sincerely cry, “Search me, oh God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”

11. An even better evidence of grace is the mind’s perception of revealed truth and its obedience to it. Then true light has shone on a man’s walk when he perceives the truth revealed by the Holy Spirit in sacred Scripture, and receives it into his heart with a childlike spirit. He who receives Christ also receives Christ’s words, and the doctrine which we believe is by no means a matter of indifference. Whatever may be said, brethren, we have received a revelation from God; which we know to be “the faith once and for all delivered to the saints.” The Lord God has broken through the veil of silence, and has revealed himself to the sons of men. Through the darkness of their minds the carnal cannot see what God has revealed, neither will they believe his truth. The truth of God is spiritual, and the natural man is carnal, and therefore the natural man will not receive the teaching which comes from God. By this test you shall know whether the true light is shining upon you: Do you believe what God has revealed in his word? or are you your own teacher — maker of your own faith? He cannot be a disciple who does not learn, but invents. Do you hear the teaching of the Lord Jesus, and believe it? I repeat it, you must not only say that you believe it, but you must indeed and of a truth believe the things which God has revealed. By this you shall know whether you are a child of light, or a child of darkness. Are the doctrines of grace essential verities with you? Whatever God has said about sin, righteousness, judgment to come, are you ready to accept it at once? Whatever he has revealed concerning himself, his Son, his Holy Spirit, the cross, life, death, hell, and the eternal future, do you believe it sincerely? This is to walk in the light. All other teaching is darkness.

12. How many correct and amend, and so betray the gospel! They take the garment of truth, and dip it in the blood of their own thought, until it is so stained that they might almost say to God himself, “Do you know whether this be your son’s coat or not?” If you are one of those who would twist the Scriptures, and force your own meaning, on them, you are not in the light. If you would make them mean other than what God intended them to mean, you are in the darkness, however learned a philosopher you may be. He only is in the light who doubts his own wisdom, and bows before the wisdom which comes from above. If you will sit at Jesus’ feet like a child, and hear his words and learn from him, then the true light has shone upon you; for he is the light who enlightens every man who comes into the world. The Holy Spirit does not come to help us to think out a system of belief of our own, but to lead us into all truth, by taking of the things from Christ and showing them to us.

13. Brethren, there is a truth and there is a lie, and no lie is the truth. Can light commune with darkness, or truth with falsehood? I make no claim of implicit faith for what I say. God forbid that I should ever become so presumptuous; for that would be a kind of blasphemy. But I claim implicit faith for what God says. Believing the gospel to be the revelation of God, I claim for it implicit faith. Believing the Lord Jesus to be an infallible teacher, I claim immediate faith in all that he has said. If this implicit faith is refused, it is because there is no light in you. To walk in the light is to know, to love, and to live the truth. To walk in the light of God is to receive our instruction from God. For me the end of all controversy is “Thus says the Lord.” Only let me know that the Lord has said this or that, and though the revelation should seem impossible to believe, and though it should come into conflict with all my previous notions, I will bow before it without a question. “The Lord has said it,” stands to us instead of all reason, and argument, and evidence; yes, we believe God in the teeth of supposed evidence and reason, saying, “Let God be true, but every man a liar.” God will not have fellowship with us if we reject his light; but on the basis of absolute truth he can and will meet us. If we come to the light, and believe his witness to the truth, then we are in the place where God can walk with us, and where the precious blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin.

14. This, beloved brethren, leads to a transparency and simplicity of character. Walking in the light produces Israelites indeed, in whom is no guile. Those who are full of deceit and craftiness upon any subject are not walking in the light of God. God will not have fellowship with any whose minds are crooked and deceitful. Some people are so warped that nothing is straight for them; their minds seem to see things crookedly; long practice in untruthfulness has given them an evil bias. This is not the case with the man in whom the light of grace is shining. The man who does in reality what he seems to do; the man who says what he means, and means what he says; the man who is truthful, guileless and sincere in all his general dealings both before God and man, it is he whose conduct leads us to hope that the light of grace shines within.

15. This is very evident in the man’s cessation from all guile towards himself. Remember how David pronounces him blessed “in whose spirit there is no guile.” He knew painfully what it was to be full of guile. See him! He has gone astray most grievously. His mind is in the dark. What does David do? There is a foul sin committed: he tries to make himself believe that it is not so very horrible; he labours to hoodwink his conscience. His sin is likely to be seen, and he tries to cover it. He brings back Bathsheba’s husband. When he declines to go to his house he must be made drunk. The plan has failed. David is afraid, but he is not penitent; on the contrary, he rushes into an even greater crime. Uriah is in the wars, and there he is deliberately exposed to death, and is slain in battle. His death is ascribed to the fortune of war. David did not see that it was murder, for he was not walking in the light. He was still in darkness, and therefore he kept all this while acting a deceitful part with his God and his own conscience. His conduct would not bear the light, and so his one idea was to keep out of the light. How changed was all this after Nathan had said to him, “You are the man!” When the light of heavenly conviction had penetrated the night of his soul, he made no more excuses, he practised no more subterfuges. He stood in the light, ashamed and confounded. Amazed at the sight of his sin, he abandoned all idea of covering it, and fled at once to the mercy of God crying, “Have mercy upon me, oh God, according to your lovingkindness.” In the sobbing and sighing of the fifty-first Psalm he lays bare his heart, and in plainest terms he cries, “Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, oh God, the God of my salvation.” He is in the light now, for deceit has gone, and now God can speak comfortingly to him, and wash him and make him whiter than snow.

16. The man who is walking in the light, as God is in the light, is full of abhorrence of sin. Sin is practical falsehood; it is moral darkness. The man who abhors evil and injustice; the man who would do good if it cost him his earthly all; the man who would not do wrong though the world should be his reward for doing it — this is the man who walks in the light, and he is the man who shall have fellowship with God, and a sense of cleansing from sin. We cannot attach too great an importance to the condition of our minds in reference to sin; for if we wink at it, or take pleasure in it, or persistently practise it, we are residing in the darkness, and we are under the wrath of God. John says, “Little children, let no man deceive you: he who does righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.” Do not forget this practical truth.

17. I fear I have scarcely brought out the fulness of the meaning. Those who are in the light will know what I mean: those who are in darkness cannot imagine what life in the light must be.

18. II. I come, secondly, to THE COMMUNION OF OUR WALK. Those who are in the light shall not be alone. God himself will be with them, and be their God. The words, “we have fellowship with each other,” constitute a wonderfully condescending expression. John would not have dared to coin such an expression; it must have been minted for him by the Spirit from above. Think of God and his people having mutual fellowship! What honour! What joy is this! So the mischief of the Fall is removed, and Paradise is restored.

19. God in the light and man in the light have much in common. Now they are residing in one element, for they are dwelling in one light. Now they are both concerned about the same thing, and their aims are undivided: God loves truth, and so do those who are renewed in heart. It has come to pass that the great Lord and his enlightened ones see things in the same light. God with his great vision beholds more than we can, yet he does not see more than the truth; and we with our narrow perceptions see the truth, and we cannot tolerate falsehood. Now we can speak with God, since we speak truth; and he can converse with us, since we are ready to hear the truth. In prayer and praise we are no longer false, and therefore the Lord can hear us. His word falls also upon an honest mind, and so its meaning is perceived. Now also we can act together: the great God and his poor feeble children are striving together for truth and righteousness. He might overlook our poor little work if he were not so good; but being infinitely condescending, he works through us whenever he sees that our work is done in truth. If our works were works of darkness, he could not co-operate with us; but now that we walk and work in the light, he is able to make us labourers together with himself.

20. Now we partake with God in sympathy, having a fellow-feeling with him. Does the great Father mourn his prodigal child? So we mourn over sinners. Do we see Jesus weeping over Jerusalem? So we mourn for the perishing who will not be saved. Again, just as God rejoices over sinners who repent, so we rejoice in sympathy with him. By coming into the light of love as well as into the light of knowledge we have received power to enter into sympathy with God. Is this not a very wonderful thing? But it is as clear and true as it is wonderful. We would gladly bring the whole world into the light. We daily pray, “Your kingdom come, your will be done.” Our will has grown to be like God’s will according to its measure, since we have come into the same light where God dwells.

21. Do you know, dear brothers and sisters, by experience what it is to be honestly dealing with eternal things, to be no longer playing, and toying, and counterfeiting, but to be in real and blessed earnest with God and spiritual facts? Then you have come into fellowship with the great God, for he is in earnest, and in him there is no trifling nor make-believe; but he is acting with intense reality, acting with his whole heart in his contention against sin, his desire for the glory of his Son, his purpose for the salvation of his people.

22. III. But now I come, in the third place, to what strikes me most in the text, and it is this — THE GLORY OF THIS COMMUNION: “We have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin.”

23. Here I am a poor creature reading this text. I find that it is possible for men to walk in fellowship with God, the great and ever-blessed. I rejoice to learn this, and my heart responds, “If there is any fellowship with God to be known, I will know it. If I can be reconciled to God, and have friendship with him, I desire it beyond everything. But how can these things be? I see that a great stone lies at the door. I cannot get out of my prison to begin this walk because this great stone of sin shuts me in.” Then the Lord comes in, and he says, “I saw that this hindrance was in your road, and so in this very verse I have shown you how I have taken it away. Precious words! The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin.” I gather from the way in which this sentence grows out of the text that this very thing, which looks as if it were the death of all communion with God, is made by infinite grace to be a wide and open channel of communion with him. This stone is rolled away from the door of the sepulchre, and the angel of communion sits down upon it as on a throne. God justifies his people in broad daylight, in a way which defies inspection, and then, by the very method of clearing away their sin, he enters into the nearest and dearest fellowship with them.

24. To begin with, here is sin! What an evil thing it is! How our soul hates it! It is uncleanness to us: a loathsome and abominable evil. You who are in the light know how every beam of light makes you see more of the heinousness, blackness, and accursed nature of sin. Even to feel a tendency towards it in your members makes you groan out, “Oh wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me.” Listen! You are having fellowship with God in this. In him is no sin, but in him is great abhorrence of sin. If you hate sin, God hates it also; and in this you are agreed. The very thought of iniquity, uncleanness, or falsehood, is abhorred by God. His holy nature detests it; and in proportion as you feel the same loathing and detestation, you have fellowship with God. This comes to you by walking in the light, as God is in the light. “Horror has taken hold upon me,” says David, “because of the wicked who forsake your law.” David was as much in fellowship with God in that horror of sin as he was another day when he could speak of God as his very great joy, and rejoice in the mercy which endures for ever. Yes, beloved, our horror for sin drives us into fellowship with the great Father in that loathing of sin which made him hide his face from his Only-Begotten because the sin of man had been made to meet upon him.

25. Let us go a step further. Sin being once perceived, the next step is that it should be gotten rid of. “Ah!” you say, “I wish I could be cleansed from it; cleansed from all of it, but how can this be? It is not possible for me to purge away my sin.” I thought I heard you singing just now: —

   Could my tears for ever flow,
   Could my zeal no respite show;
   All for sin could not atone,
   Thou must save, and thou alone.

This also is God’s thought about sin: he knows how hard it is to remove its pollution. He saw that nothing of ours could remove the horrible blot. Brethren, I know for certain that all the waters of all the seas might be encrimsoned by my scarlet sin, and yet they could not wash out the fatal stain. Not even the fires of hell could burn out the defilement of sin. In this persuasion we have fellowship with the pure and holy God, who saw that there was no means of removing sin but one; he must deliver up his own Son to death, or the sin of man could never be purged away. The sacrifice of the Only-Begotten is the unique hope of sinners. The laying of our iniquity upon him who condescended to be the great scapegoat of his people is the sole means for the taking away of the sins of the world. That inward persuasion of the impossibility of the purging of sin by any doings or feelings of our own, and the subsequent perception that only in Christ lies the help of men, has brought us through the light of truth to walk in fellowship with the thrice-holy God.

26. Now go a step further. The glorious Son of God condescends to become the atonement for sin. He is taken to the tree; our sins are made to meet upon his blessed head, and there he dies the just for the unjust. He was made sin for us, so that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. Standing by the tree of doom, we look up to that blessed Saviour with all-absorbing admiration and love. We admire him as the masterpiece of divine wisdom, grace, power, and truth; and, admiring, we love him; we pledge ourselves to him. Herein we have entered into fellowship with the great Father indeed and of a truth; for the Father loves his Son infinitely: he greatly delights in him. No thought of Christ that the most rapturous enthusiast ever had can reach halfway to God’s thoughts of Christ. See how holy Bernard seems to go into a delirium of love when he talks about his divine Master! Oh Bernard, you cannot tell how the Father loves Jesus, how he delights in his sacrifice, how he takes pleasure in his exaltation! In the putting away of sin by the blood of Jesus the Father has an infinite contentment, and so have we. Beloved, we rejoice in the divine satisfaction for sin; it is a well of divine delight to us. This satisfaction is not accomplished by anything being hushed up and concealed; but, walking in the light, as God is in the light, we have fellowship with God in the one glorious sacrifice. Suppose I could persuade myself that sin is a trifle, I would not be walking in the light, and I should have no fellowship with God. Suppose I said, “Pooh, pooh! sin can easily be forgiven, I am sure it requires no atonement,” I would not be walking in the light, and I should have no fellowship with God. Suppose I said, “Though Jesus died, his death was only the close of his life, and no special reference needs to be made to it as a sacrifice for sin,” I would not be walking in the light, and I should have no fellowship with God.

27. Go a step further. Beloved, many of us have come to Jesus Christ by faith; we have looked to him, and have accepted him as our Saviour cleansing us from all sin. Joy, joy, joy for ever: the brightest day that ever dawned on us was that day when we saw all our sins numbered on our blessed Scapegoat and carried away into the wilderness of forgetfulness! When God saw the blood of old he passed over Israel, for his justice was satisfied; and it is so with Jesus. How glad and content we are to see how Jesus finished transgression, made an end of sin, and brought in everlasting righteousness! Brethren, the death of Jesus is a cleansing from sin which will bear the light: it is no insignificant business, no winking at evil, no suspension of law, no making out that sin is not sin. No, the debt is acknowledged, and what is far better, it is paid. The guilty are punished in their substitute, and so in him they are justly set free. We shall all appear before the judgment seat; and I am glad it is so, for the stain of our sin is so effectively removed by the blood of Jesus that we are clean every bit, and even the eye of divine justice will see no spot in us. We rejoice in perfect whiteness, for the Lord has made us whiter than snow. Yes, we have fellowship with God in this cleansing, for God accepts us in the Beloved. God who made him to be the Lord our Righteousness, God himself justifies us in his Son. He will in the last great day make the whole universe a witness to the righteousness of the salvation of believers. All intelligences shall see that in Christ all who are in him are truly justified, and most justly saved. How the Lord God and his people will have fellowship in their common joy in the work and person of Jesus, as they see its perfection, and the way in which all sin is removed by it! Our salvation in Christ is in the light in the most eminent degree: it will bear the full, fierce light of Sinai to be turned upon it, and yet no flaw will be found in it. This is wonderful! This is glorious! Do you wonder that God is well pleased in him! And are we not well pleased! Blessed be his name. Do you not see how we have fellowship with each other? Oh, that I had strength to present before you the thoughts which fill my soul!

28. Brethren, we are now at one with God in his master-purpose. Was it not in his heart to create beings with whom he might have fellowship? He made the heavens and the earth; he made the angels; he made all things; but he could find no companionship in all these things. Our Lord, like Adam, found no helpmeet for himself in any of the creatures he had made. He desired to produce and bring to himself an order of beings who could be glorified without danger of pride, who could think and feel as the First-born would do; in fact, would become the friends of the Son of God. How were these creatures to be produced? Not by an immediate fiat of creation. He could speak angels into being by a word; but in the constitution of these beings there would need to be an experience and a discipline to prepare them for their lofty position. Their model was to be the Son of Jehovah’s love. He was to be the First-born among many brethren. It was necessary for these creatures to know sin, and yet to hate it more fully than if they had never known it; to know the love of God, and to be bound by it for ever to an unsinning obedience, which would fill them with boundless happiness. Behold the process by which this new creation, this new order of creatures should come about. Consider the processes which by the Fall, the incarnation, the Cross, and the new birth work out the sacred result! When you have read the past in this light, then gaze into the future. Now we see how throughout eternity we shall walk in the light, as God is in the light, and have fellowship with each other — fellowship culminating in Jesus Christ the Only-Begotten, and the cleansing from all sin by his blood. The blood-washed are to be the friends of God, with whom he shall speak face-to-face, as he speaks with no angel or seraph. With these he will dwell, and he will be their God, and they shall be his people; and in them and through them he will make known the glories of his Son to wondering worlds. This great purpose has been accomplished to a considerable extent by the Lord’s having already made us to walk in the light, as he is in the light, and by washing us in the precious blood; but it does not even yet appear what we shall be. This much we practically seek after: henceforth we live for Christ! Henceforth our chief glory is the cross! Henceforth our beau-ideal {a} of glory for ourselves is to see Jesus glorified! The torrents have swept us away! We are no longer bound to this earth! We are borne along by the irresistible force of eternal love! God has achieved his purpose in our blood-washed souls; walking in the light we are now in harmony with his master-purpose, and we cry: “Father, glorify your Son!”

29. I am finished; but oh, I wish that all your hearts were brought into the light of God at this moment! Oh, that you would abandon the dark ways of self-righteousness, carelessness, thoughtlessness, and sin, and come into the light of truth! Oh, that the light may come to you as to Saul of Tarsus, and at once transform you! May the Spirit of God bring you to know God and his Son Jesus Christ, whom to know is life eternal.

[Portion Of Scripture Read Before Sermon — 1Jo 1; 2]
{See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Jesus Christ, His Praise — Christ’s Glorious Person” 425}
{See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Gospel, Its Excellencies — Power Of The Gospel” 484}
{See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Jesus Christ, Sufferings and Death — Wonders Of The Cross” 289}
{See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 3564, “Publications” 3566 @@ "My Sermon Notes"}


{a} Beau-ideal: The highest conceived or conceivable type of beauty or excellence of any kind; that in which one’s “idea” is realised, the perfect type or model. OED.

Jesus Christ, His Praise
425 — Christ’s Glorious Person
1 Now to the Lord a noble song!
   Awake, my soul, awake, my tongue;
   Hosanna to th’ Eternal Name,
   And all his boundless love proclaim.
2 See where it shines in Jesus’ face,
   The brightest image of his grace;
   God, in the person of his Son,
   Has all his mightest works outdone.
3 The spacious earth and spreading flood
   Proclaim the wise and powerful God,
   And thy rich glories from afar
   Sparkle in every rolling star.
4 But in his looks a glory stands,
   The noblest labour of thine hands;
   The pleasing lustre of his eyes
   Outshines the wonders of the skies.
5 Grace! ‘tis a sweet, a charming theme;
   My thoughts rejoice at Jesus’ name:
   Ye angels dwell upon the sound,
   Ye heavens reflect it to the ground!
                           Isaac Watts, 1709.


Gospel, Its Excellencies
484 — Power Of The Gospel
1 This is the word of truth and love,
   Sent to the nations from above;
   Jehovah here resolves to show
   What his almighty grace can do.
2 This remedy did wisdom find
   To heal diseases of the mind;
   This sovereign balm, whose virtues can
   Restore the ruin’d creature, man.
3 The gospel bids the dead revive,
   Sinners obey the voice, and live;
   Dry bones are raised, and clothed afresh,
   And hearts of stone are turn’d to flesh.
4 Lions and beasts of savage name
   Put on the nature of the lamb;
   While the wide world esteem it strange,
   Gaze and admire, and hate the change.
5 May but this grace my soul renew,
   Let sinners gaze, and hate me too;
   The word that saves me does engage
   A sure defence from all their rage.
                           Isaac Watts, 1709.


Jesus Christ, Sufferings and Death
289 — Wonders Of The Cross
1 Nature with open volume stands,
   To spread her Maker’s praise abroad;
   And every labour of his hands
   Shows something worthy of a God.
2 But in the grace that rescued man
   His brightest form of glory shines;
   Here, on the cross, ‘tis fairest drawn
   In precious blood and crimson lines.
3 Here I behold his inmost heart,
   Where grace and vengeance strangely join,
   Piercing his Son with sharpest smart,
   To make the purchased pleasures mine.
4 Oh, the sweet wonders of that cross,
   Where God the Saviour loved and died!
   Her noblest life my spirit draws
   From his dear wounds and bleeding side.
5 I would for ever speak his name,

Spurgeon Sermons

These sermons from Charles Spurgeon are a series that is for reference and not necessarily a position of Answers in Genesis. Spurgeon did not entirely agree with six days of creation and dives into subjects that are beyond the AiG focus (e.g., Calvinism vs. Arminianism, modes of baptism, and so on).

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Modernized Edition of Spurgeon’s Sermons. Copyright © 2010, Larry and Marion Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario, Canada. Used by Answers in Genesis by permission of the copyright owner. The modernized edition of the material published in these sermons may not be reproduced or distributed by any electronic means without express written permission of the copyright owner. A limited license is hereby granted for the non-commercial printing and distribution of the material in hard copy form, provided this is done without charge to the recipient and the copyright information remains intact. Any charge or cost for distribution of the material is expressly forbidden under the terms of this limited license and automatically voids such permission. You may not prepare, manufacture, copy, use, promote, distribute, or sell a derivative work of the copyrighted work without the express written permission of the copyright owner.

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