2324. The Followers Of The Lamb

by on
Share:

No. 2324-39:421. A Sermon Delivered On Lord’s Day Evening, August 4, 1889, By C. H. Spurgeon, At The Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.

A Sermon Intended For Reading On Lord’s Day, September 3, 1893.

These are those who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. These were redeemed from among men, being the first-fruits to God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God. {Re 14:4,5}

 For other sermons on this text:
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2324, “Followers of the Lamb, The” 2325}
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2456, “Lamb Our Leader, The” 2457}
   Exposition on Re 14 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2324, “Followers of the Lamb, The” 2325 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Re 14 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2456, “Lamb Our Leader, The” 2457 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Re 14 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2910, “Harvest and the Vintage, The” 2911 @@ "Exposition"}

1. Whatever the saints are in heaven, they began to be on earth. There is, no doubt, a perfection of character in the world to come; but the character must be formed here. In the next world there will be no real change; where the tree falls, there it will lie; he who is filthy will still be filthy, he who is holy will still be holy. I am going to talk to you tonight about those who surround the Lamb, and are with him in the blaze of his glory, singing to his honour. I say that what they were in heaven they were in a measure on earth. The life of glory is the life of grace. That life which men have in heaven comes to them in regeneration on earth. When they are born again, they are born for heaven; then it is that they receive the life which lives on throughout the eternal ages. If you do not have that life here, you will never have it. If you die dead in sin, there is nothing for you for ever but the abode of the dead, “where their worm does not die, and their fire is not quenched.” Today is the only time which we have for character-forming. Earth is the great place for making instruments of music; here they are tuned and prepared; up there, they play them; but they will never play them there unless they have had them made and tuned here.

2. The subject of my discourse will be, first, a survey of the outline of the character of those who are to be with Christ hereafter; and then, secondly, a contemplation of the perfect picture of the saints with Christ in glory, where I trust we, too, shall be, in the Lord’s good time.

3. I do not know whether these verses describe all the saints in heaven. If they do, then you must be like them, or you can never be among them. If, however, they describe the elect of the elect, the innermost circle of heaven, if they describe the body-guard of Christ, the immortals who perpetually surround him, nearest to his person, the most divinely like him, if they describe a kind of aristocracy of the skies, the nobility of heaven, — and it seems to me that they do, for they are the first-fruits, and the rest of the righteous may be regarded as the harvest reaped afterwards, — if these words describe some special saints, then we should seek to be like them. I would cultivate a holy ambition to be among the brightest stars of God. Why should we not reach to the highest prize of our high calling? If there is any speciality among the redeemed above, should it not be our earnest desire to attain to that standard?

4. I. So, first, here is AN OUTLINE OF THE CHARACTER OF THOSE BLESSED ONES WHILE THEY ARE HERE.

5. And, first, notice their adherence to the doctrine of sacrifice while they are here: “These are those who follow the Lamb.” There are some professing Christians who talk much about the example of Christ, but deny the efficacy of his atoning blood; they are not of those who will be in heaven. There are some who magnify the philosophy of Christ; all his ethical teaching is greatly to their taste; but, as for his being a Substitute offered up as a sacrifice on account of human guilt, they cannot tolerate it. Very well; they cannot enter heaven, for “these are those who follow the Lamb”; not Christ only, notice that, but Christ as the Lamb of God’s passover, Christ as the Lamb of God slain before the foundation of the world, Christ as the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. You cannot be of that blessed number, if you reject Christ as a sacrifice. As for me, and I trust for you also, “God forbid that I should glory, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ!” Christianity without the blood of Christ is a dead Christianity; it has nothing to give life to it, “for the blood is its life.” If you take away the doctrine of sacrifice, you have taken away the core, the heart, the pith, the marrow of all Christianity. You have left bones for dogs; but you have not left food for immortal spirits. Whoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he should believe in Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son: that whoever believes in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Look, look, look to him, and be saved, all you ends of the earth, for he is God, even the bleeding Saviour, he is God, and besides him there is no one else. May it be said of you all, dear friends, that you followed the Lamb by your adherence to his atoning sacrifice!

6. So many have followed the Lamb in spite of fierce persecution. Remember that brave woman, Ann Askew. {a} When they had racked her, and pulled every limb out of joint, so that she ached all over in her exquisitely delicate frame, yet she sat on the stone floor of her cell, and still defended the sacrifice of Christ. When she had an opportunity to write her thoughts, she penned that quaint verse, —

    I am not she that list,
       My anchor to let fall,
    For every drizzling mist;
       My ship’s substantial.

She thought that being vexed by Popish priests and torn to pieces on the rack was only a drizzling mist, for which it was not worth while to cast her anchor. She was more than a match for fifty priests. God raise us up a race of such men and women! The devil seems to have taken the backbone out of most people. May we begin to know what we do know, and to believe what we do believe, and to put our foot down, and say, “God helping me, I will not forsake my God, nor turn away from his truth.” You remember how Martin Luther, when he stood at the Diet of Worms, closed what he had to say when they told him to recant, and he would not. He said, “Here I stand; I can do no other, so help me God”; and so, invoking the help of his divine Lord, he committed his body to the flames, if needs be, sooner than he would renounce a single Word of the Most High, or sin against the light which he had received.

7. And, next, it is clear concerning these people that they followed the Lamb by practically imitating Christ’s example, for it is written, “These are those who follow the Lamb wherever he goes.” They so believed in him that —

    They mark’d the footsteps that he trod,
       His zeal inspired their breast,
    And following their incarnate God,
       Possess the promised rest.

You cannot be with Christ unless you are like Christ. If you have really trusted in Jesus, he will transform you, he will take away from you those evil tendencies and vile propensities which are contrary to holiness, he will work in you to will and to do of his own good pleasure. And the highest holiness for you is to be like Christ. The very noblest possible character to which you could ever reach is to follow the Lamb wherever he goes, in obedience to God, in love for man, in self-sacrifice, in humility, in gentleness, in love. You must follow him wherever he goes, and do what he did, as far as your position makes it fit for you to do it. I mean that you cannot do as he did as God, but you can do what he did as man. Try to put your feet down in the footprints that he has left you. Aim at complete conformity to Christ; and where you fail to reach it, note that you come so far short of what you ought to be. To be like Christ is what God intends for you; and unless you have some measure of it now, you will never be with him, for all those who are with Christ above are the people who were made like Christ here below. Note that very distinctly, “These are those who follow the Lamb wherever he goes.”

8. Will you, dear friends, labour to take Christ for your pattern? Do not come and take his name, and then dishonour his character. There are among you some who are very much like your Master; you are the joy of the church. There are among all the churches some who bear Christ’s name, but are not like him. My venerable predecessor, Dr. Rippon, used to say of his church that he had in it some of the best people in England; and then he used to add in a low voice, “and some of the worst.” I am afraid that I have to say the same; but I am very sorry that I should have to say it. The worst people in the world are those who profess most and do least. Do not be among that unhappy number; but please, by the blessing of God, and the help of his Spirit, be among those who at least endeavour to “follow the Lamb wherever he goes.”

9. Now, notice in the sketch of these people that they recognised a special redemption:“ These were redeemed from among men.” Christ had done something for them that he had not done for others. They were not redeemed “among men,” but “from among men.” They recognised the speciality of Christ’s sacrifice. They could read, for example, a passage like this, and understand its meaning, “Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it,” for his church, for his body. “These were redeemed from among men.” Come, beloved, do you belong to this company of people who have been brought out from the rest of mankind by the power of the Spirit of God, and also by the merit of the precious blood? Do you feel that you are marked with the blood as others are not? Do you belong to a people who are not of the world, even as he who bought them was not of the world? Are you henceforth not of the common multitude, but one who has been bought and paid for by that redemptive price which was found in the veins and the heart of the Redeemer, and are you so redeemed as no longer to be one of the great mass of mankind, but brought out, called out, chosen, “not your own, but bought with a price?” These are those who will be with Christ hereafter, as specially redeemed ones.

10. And since they recognised a special redemption, you will observe that they made a full surrender of themselves to God and to the Lamb: “These were redeemed from among men, being the first-fruits to God and to the Lamb.” On a certain day, when the harvest was getting ripe, a man went down to the fields, and picked an ear here, a handful there, and another handful farther on, and he passed along the field, and gathered ears here and ears there, and when he had collected enough for sheaves, he tied them up, and took them to the temple of God, and presented them to the Lord as an offering, to signify that he owed all the harvest to God, and he brought him the first-ripe ears as a sacrifice to him. Now, beloved, has the grace of God taken you out from among the rest of mankind, and do you feel that now you belong to Christ, that you belong to God, that you are not to be gathered with the majority of men for the great condemnation, but that you are presented to God, and belong to him altogether? It is a very easy thing for me to talk about this; but, believe me, it is by no means an easy thing to carry it out. I see numerous people who profess to belong to God; but they live as much for money-making as anyone else, they live quite as much for self-seeking as the world does; and it would be difficult, even if you had microscopes on both your eyes, to see any difference between them and worldlings. This will never do. “ ‘Come out from among them, and be separate,’ says the Lord, ‘and do not touch the unclean thing.’ ” If you are the first-fruits to God, be so; if you belong to yourself, serve yourself; but if, by the redemption of Christ, you are not your own, but bought with a price, then live as those who are the King’s own, who must serve God, and cannot be content unless their every action shall tend to the divine glory, and to the magnifying of Christ Jesus. Now this is what all of us who are truly the Lord’s have in outline. Oh, that the sketch might be properly filled up, that we might become more and more the first-fruits to God and to the Lamb!

11. I must take you a little further. These people who are to be with Christ, the nearest to him, are a people free from falsehood. “In their mouth was found no guile.” Brethren, if we profess to be Christians, we do away with all craft, policy, double-dealing, and the like. The Christian man should be a plain man, who says what he means, and means what he says. I know of no worse suspicion against any man who professes to be a Christian than the suspicion of not being transparent. It would be better for us to be as simple as fools than to be as cunning as hypocrites, even though our cunning should place us in the front rank of the governors of mankind. The Christian man should scorn to tell a lie; exaggeration and equivocation should be strangers to his lips. “In their mouth was found no guile.” The Lord Jesus Christ was a great speaker of plain truth; and those whom he chooses to be near him, to be his personal attendants in heaven, must also be free from guile. With many a mistake, with many a weakness, yet, beloved, the saints are free from falsehood. They are true, whatever may be their mistakes. Look at yourselves, and see whether it is so; as I would look at my own soul, I charge you to look at yours.

12. And then, once more, it is said that they are free from blemish “they are without fault before the throne of God.” “Oh!” one says, “I am not without fault.” No, but there is the outline of that character in you if you are, indeed, one of the Lord’s people; you have already gotten rid of many faults, and you are getting rid of more; you grieve over what remains, and you will never rest until every sin is conquered. Is it not so, beloved? Saints are not only men of honour, but men of holiness; we would not tolerate any known sin in ourselves. Whenever we are carried into a fault by temptation or by inbred sin, we feel unhappy; we bow low in the dust, and we cry to God for grace, so that we may not commit the same sin again. But God’s people are a blameless people, after all. If you are to find pure and right characters, where will you find them but among the followers of the Lamb? You and I know many believers in Christ whose lives are blameless; we would not say that they are absolutely without fault, but still, the grace of God so works in them that we may safely take them for examples, and do as they have done. It was so in the olden times, and it is so now; and unless your character is such that your children may safely imitate it, and your servants may tread in your footsteps, and your neighbours may act as you do without going wrong, how can you hope to be where Jesus is? Jesus Christ receives sinners, but he makes them saints. The gospel opens a great hospital, not for sick men to lie in it and remain sick, but that they may recover health there, and may be made strong. He who believes in Christ is saved, saved in this sense among others, that he is saved from the power of sin, and turned from an unholy and godless life into a life of purity, honesty, and uprightness. “Do not be deceived,” any of you, tonight, “God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows that he shall also reap.” If there is not about you a likeness to Christ, if there is not at least the sketch which I have tried to depict, then, surely, you are not among those who will be for ever where Jesus is. I have seen an artist make his crayon drawing; he just took a piece of charcoal, and marked out what he was going to draw. I am afraid that is about all that is done with us here. There is an outline made with the charcoal; all the lines of beauty and all the glory of character are yet to be filled in as we grow in grace and in likeness to Christ. But, at least, there must be that sketch. If you do not have that, come humbly to the feet of Jesus, and pray that he would begin in you his good work, which he will carry on and perfect in the day of his appearing.

13. So much on the outline of the character of saints while they are on the earth.

14. II. Now indulge me for just a few minutes while I try to give you A GLIMPSE OF THE PERFECT PICTURE IN HEAVEN. I cannot really show you the picture; that is in the upper gallery in glory, and you must go up there to see it. I can only tell you my idea of what that picture is like when it is finished.

15. Well, first, those who are with Christ enjoy perfect fellowship with him. Up there, they “follow the Lamb wherever he goes.” They are always with him. There were certain young princes chosen in certain courts to attend to the king. Wherever the king went, they went; where the court was, there was their abode; their one business was to behold the king’s face, and to abide near him. That is the business of the glorified ones of whom I am speaking. When will the day arrive that you and I shall enjoy this perfect fellowship with our glorious King, never absent from him, never doubting his love, never cold in our affection towards him, but being —

    “For ever with the Lord?”

Shall I go on with the verse?

       Amen! so let it be!
    Life from the dead is in that word,
       ’Tis immortality!

16. Some of you have dear children who have outstripped their mother, and are enjoying this felicity even now. Others of us have mothers, brothers, and friends who were very dear to us, who follow the Lamb in glory. How many who once sat among us here are now up there, following the Lamb, and he leads them to living fountains of waters, and all tears are wiped away from their eyes! Oh, to think that wherever my Lord shall go I shall go! When he shall descend from heaven with a shout, we shall come with him. When he shall sit on his throne to judge the world, his saints shall sit with him. When he shall reign among his ancients gloriously for a thousand years, we shall reign with him on the earth. When he shall return to the Father’s throne, —

    “All his work and warfare done,”

we shall partake in his triumph, following the Lamb wherever he goes. I vote to cast in my lot with my Lord in life and in death; what do you say? My Master, where you dwell, I will dwell; if men put you to shame, I will be put to shame with you; if you die, I will die with you, so that I may for ever live with you in your glory above. Do you not say the same, beloved? Say it deep down in your heart tonight.

17. Well, now, notice in this complete picture, next, that up there they are perfectly accepted with God: “These were redeemed from among men, being the first-fruits to God and to the Lamb.” God always accepts them; he always looks on them as his first-fruits, bought with his Son’s blood, and brought by his Son into his heavenly temple, to be his for ever. Sometimes here we mar our service; but they never mar it there. Our songs get out of tune, but theirs never know a discord. We praise the Lord, and yet groan, being burdened; but in heaven there are —

    No groans to mingle with the songs
    Which warble from immortal tongues.

We doubt; we fear; we grieve the Holy Spirit; sometimes we get very sadly out of sync with God. It is never so there; fully redeemed from sin, they are accepted in the Beloved, and to the very best of their ability they know it, and enjoy it. Happy day, happy day, when you and I shall be of them and among them!

18. Observe, also, that they have perfect truth there in heart and soul:“ In their mouth was found no guile.” “No lie,” says the 1881 English Revised Version. Here, dear friends, we fall into error inadvertently, and sometimes, I fear, negligently. We say, not knowingly, more than the truth. How often we say much less than the truth, and almost necessarily so when we speak of divine things; but up there they are not only free from wilful guile and deceit, but they are free from all error and mistake. Happy day! Happy day! Do you not long to be there to be rid of every false doctrine, every wrong opinion, every error, every mistake, so that in your mouth there shall never be guile again? This is what they are above, made perfect. He who washed their hearts here has washed their tongues there. Just as they loved the truth here, so they know the truth there. Just as they sought it here, so they have found it there. Just as they were willing to die for it here, they live in the enjoyment of it there, and shall do so for ever.

19. One more feature of that perfect picture is this, they enjoy perfect sinlessness before God:“ They are without fault before the throne of God.” That text brings back to my memory the second sermon I preached to this church, one Sabbath evening, when we were only a few: “They are without fault before the throne of God.” I had great joy, as a youth, in expounding on the perfect blessing of being altogether “without spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing.” If there were any fault in them there, they are where it would be seen, for they are before the throne of the all-seeing God; but even there, in that matchless place of light in which there is no darkness at all, they are declared to be without fault, without blemish. Can you think that you will be in that happy number one day? I had to put it very mildly just now when I spoke of saints being without blame here; but you may put it as strongly as you please when you speak of their being without sin there. They were once, perhaps, before conversion, the very chief of sinners; but in heaven there shall be no trace of their sin. They will bless the grace that came to them when they were up to their neck in the filth of sin; but there will be no trace of their filthiness left. There is no blood stain on Manasseh, there is no brand of blasphemy on Saul of Tarsus now; they have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Some of these men were by nature and by practice, too, so depraved that it looked as if they could never escape from their evil habits. We might have said of them, “Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Then may these men, who are accustomed to do evil, learn to do good.” Yet so has the grace of God changed them, that there is no trace of any evil tendency, no propensity to lust, or lewdness, or blasphemy, or any kind of fault.

20. What a wonderful change it will be for those who were once great sinners to be found without fault; not only without great crime, not only without gross vice, but without fault, and that, too, as I have said, before the throne of God, where, if there were a fault, it would be seen! They are cleansed from all the guilt of sin, and from all the depravity which the habit of sin brings to men. “They are without fault before the throne of God.” Truly, if you had never heard this before, it might make you laugh for joy to think that it should ever be possible that the very chief of sinners, through faith in Christ, might be made so clean as one day to be without fault before the throne of God. I think that, when we get there, part of the joy of heaven will be a long surprise, an endless wonder; and if we are permitted there to remember what we used to be, some of you will recall a night of sin, and say, “And yet I am here.” You will recall, perhaps, some dreadful passion, some atrocious outburst of foul language, or some terrible occasion of sin, and you will say, “Yet I am here, clean as the driven snow, washed in the blood of Jesus, and renewed by the Spirit of God.” Although they always praise God, I think that they must every now and then have a fresh outburst of hallelujahs when they begin to review the past. One says, “I, even after conversion, was a poor, limping Christian, and I was thrown back once or twice with terrible backslidings. My Christian friends despaired of my ever holding on; and yet I am here, without fault before the throne of God. Hallelujah!” Will not a man be obliged to break out like that, and do you not think that all the saints around him will take up the Hallelujah, too, until it goes in swelling chorus all around the choirs of heaven, “Hallelujah to God and the Lamb?” And another one will say, “And I, after I had long known the Lord, fell, oh, so sadly, so grievously! But he would not give me up, he followed me; and by his mighty grace, I was restored, my broken bones were set again, and I was made to sing of free grace and forgiving love. He created in me a new heart, and renewed a right spirit within me; and now I, even I, am here without fault, without a single fault.” You can hardly imagine it, can you? You begin to think, “Well, surely that cannot be,” for, if you look within, you see so many faults over which you groan; but you will look without and look within, when you once get there, and neither without nor within, in any respect whatever, will you have any kind of fault; for “They are without blemish before the throne of God.”

21. I do not feel inclined to preach any more, but just to shout, “Hallelujah,” again and again, at the very thought that I shall be there. Oh, it is hard to go to heaven from such a place as what I occupy! Your eyes sometimes startle me in my dreams, these thousands of eyes fixed on one poor mortal man, who has to try to lead you to Christ, and lead you to heaven. Your eyes at times seem to pierce me like so many daggers. I think, sometimes, “What if I am not faithful, if I do not preach plainly, if I do not warn them, if I do not invite them earnestly, if I do not with all my heart cry, ‘Come to Christ’? What shall I do in eternity if six thousand pairs of eyes are for ever seeming to stick, like daggers, into my heart?” Oh, but it will not be so! I believe in him who justifies the ungodly; and I have fully preached him to you, and all my great congregation. My hope is in the precious blood that cleanses from all sin; and I have pointed all my hearers to that precious blood; and the day will come when I, with all who believe in Jesus, shall be without fault before the throne of God. The very thought of it makes me cry “Hallelujah,” and with that I finish. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Say “Hallelujah,” all of you. [“Hallelujah” from the congregation.] Hallelujah! Hallelujah to God and the Lamb! May the Lord bless you, for Christ’s sake! Amen.

{a} Anne Askew (born 1521-died July 16, 1546) was an English poet and Protestant who was condemned as a heretic. She is the only woman on record known to have been both tortured in the Tower of London and burned at the stake. See Explorer "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Askew"

Exposition By C. H. Spurgeon {Re 14}

1. And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb —

John always writes of Jesus as the “Lamb.” His Lord is to him in his sacrificial character always “the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” by the shedding of his blood. “I looked, and, lo, a Lamb” —

1. Stood on the Mount Zion, and with him a hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written on their foreheads.

The 1881 English Revised Version has it, “having his name, and the name of his Father, written on their foreheads.” Now they are known to be the Lord’s; on earth that fact was questioned, but his name is written on their foreheads now. Sometimes they themselves had to question it, but now it is apparent to all, the distinguishing mark is stamped on their brow: “having his Father’s name written on their foreheads.”

2. And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpists playing on their harps:

It was very loud, but very sweet. It is not easy in earthly music to blend the two: but in heaven, all the energies of living men shall be thrown into the song; and yet it shall be sweet as the touch of a minstrel when he lays his fingers gently among the strings of the harp.

3. And they sang as it were a new song before the throne,

They could not sing any old song there. The songs of earth, sweet as some of them are, are not good enough to be sung in heaven. With a new experience, new delights, and a clearer vision of their Lord, they must have a new song.

3. And before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, who were redeemed from the earth.

Heaven is not the place to learn that song; it must be learned on the earth. You must learn here the notes of free grace and dying love; and when you have mastered their melody, you will be able to offer to the Lord the tribute of a grateful heart, even in heaven, and blend it with the eternal harmonies. Suppose, for a moment, that you could go there, and that you were unprepared to sing the new song, you would have to say, “I cannot join in the chorus, for I do not know the tune.” You must learn the song now, the new song of praise to our God, or you cannot be admitted there. I should not expect, if I went down to the Handel Festival, for the conductor to permit me to take a place in the choir. He would ask me “Can you sing? Have you ever rehearsed the matchless music of Handel?” and when I answered “No,” he would tell me to step aside; so you must learn the music of Calvary, you must learn the music of the name of Jesus, or you cannot sing in heaven. No man could learn the song but the redeemed from the earth; not redeemed, you see, by a general redemption, of which some so loudly talk; but redeemed from among men by a special redemption, which took them out from the rest of mankind, by a price paid for them, so that they were bought as others were not bought, by the precious blood of Jesus, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot.

4. These are those who were not defiled with women; for they are virgins.

They were pure and chaste in the sight of God.

4. These are those who follow the Lamb wherever he goes.

His choice attendants, his body-guard.

4, 5. These were redeemed from among men, being the first-fruits to God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile:

“No lie.” They were truthful, they were truth-speakers.

5. For they are without fault —

Or, blemish.

5. Before the throne of God.

Like him with whom they associated, the Lamb of God, they were without blemish and without spot.

6. And I saw —

What wonderful sights John saw! I do not wonder that he saw them; he had leaned his head on Christ’s bosom, and that qualified him to see what you and I cannot see. Near communion to Christ is the best qualification for a vision of mystery. Get into the very heart of Christ, and you shall see wonderful things: “I saw” —

6, 7. Another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, “Fear God, and give glory to him;

Is this the gospel? It is one version, evidently, of the everlasting gospel. “The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom.” Truly, to worship him as he reveals himself, is true godliness; and in it lies all the gospel: “Having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, ‘Fear God, and give glory to him.’ ”

7, 8. For the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.” And there followed another angel, saying, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen,

This will not happen until the gospel is fully preached. Superstition does not come down unless true religion is set up. One angel proclaims the everlasting gospel; the next declares that the great system of error is fallen: “Babylon is fallen.”

8. That great city, because she made all nations drink the wine of the wrath of her fornication.”

You know that gigantic system of error which professes to come from God, and to be the only true church; but it must fall.

9, 10. And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If any man worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

They sometimes say that we talk very terribly about the world to come. Do we say more than the Scripture says? Do we use more terrific emblems than the Holy Spirit uses when he speaks in this way? This is a generation that is not to be pleased, neither do we seek to please it. God’s wrath is terrible, and our language cannot be too strong to express the overwhelming power of it.

11. And the smoke of their torment ascends up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.”

Keep true to Christ; wear his name on your forehead. Follow no system of error; do not be deluded either by Ritualism or Rationalism, {b} by superstition or by unbelief. Keep close to the Word of God, and ask to be taught by the Spirit of God.

12, 13. Here is the patience of the saints: here are those who keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. And I heard a voice from heaven, saying to me, “Write, ‘Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on’ ”: “Yes,” says the Spirit, “that they may rest from their labours; and their works follow them.”

Those who carried the mark of the beast were accursed and went after falsehood; but blessed are those who follow Christ, even though they die. Dying in the Lord, their works survive them, and they themselves live for ever with him.

14. And I looked, and behold a while cloud,

One of these days, every eye will look and see what is described here. A little time may elapse, but it will soon be past. How quickly years fly away! Think where you will be in the day when you, too, will say, “I looked, and behold a white cloud.”

14-16. And on the cloud one sat like the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him who sat on the cloud, “Thrust in your sickle, and reap: for the time is come for you to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.” And he who sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped.

This is the gathering in of the godly, who are Christ’s wheat. He himself reaps them; no angel, notice that, but himself, with his own sharp sickle and with his own dear hand. These are his sheaves, he sowed for wheat; he himself was that wheat which fell into the ground and died, and produced much fruit. So he gathers into his own bosom his own sheaves with his own hand. “May I be among them!” Make that your prayer tonight. “May I be one golden ear in Christ’s great harvest!”

17. And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.

Not this time the King, but an angel; not the Son of man who sat on the cloud, but an angel, the servant of God, deputed to execute vengeance.

18, 19. And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, “Thrust in your sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.” And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth,

This is the gathering together of the ungodly, those wicked clusters that ripen in sin, and that become red with iniquity. Christ does not gather them, you see. That is left to an angel to do; he thrust in his sickle, and gathered the grapes of the earth.

19. And cast it into the great wine-press of the wrath of God.

Can you see the clusters flung into the wine-press? Will you be there? May God grant that neither you nor I, in that terrible day, may be among the clusters of the wicked!

20. And the wine-press was trodden outside the city, and blood came out of the wine-press, even to the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.

So terrible will be even the preliminary destruction of the ungodly. Though they grow in clusters, yet they shall perish. “Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished.”

“He who has ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit says” to each one of us. Amen.

 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “The Christian, Heaven — Jesus Adored In Heaven” 878}
 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “The Christian, Aspirations for Heaven — The Sight Of God And Christ In Heaven” 855}

{a} Rationalism: Theol. The practice of explaining in a manner agreeable to reason whatever is apparently supernatural in the records of sacred history. OED.

 The Sword and the Trowel
 Table of Contents, September, 1893.
 Mr. Spurgeon’s First Outlines of Sermons preached in Cambridgeshire in 1851. Printed from his own Manuscripts.
 Hints and Helps from the Margin of my Bible. By Pastor J. D. Gilmore, Brannoxtown.
 “Rutherford’s Witnesses.” Cited by Mrs. C. H. Spurgeon.
 “The Shadow of a Name.”
 Pastor Thomas Spurgeon’s Return to the Tabernacle. Letter No. II., Continuing the Description of his Recent Voyage from New Zealand.
 Unpublished Notes of C. H. Spurgeon’s New Park Street Sermons. Reported by Pastor T. W. Medhurst, Cardiff. No. III.
 “Come unto Me.” (Poetry.) By Pastor E. A. Tydeman, Sidcup.
 Mr. Spurgeon’s Last Drive at Mentone. By Joseph W. Harrald. (Illustrated.)
 The Round of the Prayer-meetings. IX. Pastor C. B. Sawday’s Farewell Meetings at Melbourne Hall, Leicester.
 “A Colony of Mercy.” An Illustrated Review. By W. Y. F.
 The Lord’s Work in Spain. By J. P. Wigstone, Missionary, Linares.
 The Right Order. By Pastor C. M. Longhurst, Birmingham.
 “Sold out.” “Fresh Supplies on Tuesday morning.” By J. H. Coulson.
 Mr. Spurgeon and the Discouraged Farmer. By Pastor A. J. Parker, Old Sodbury.
 “No man dieth to himself.” By C. H. Spurgeon.
 In Memoriam — Pastor George Samuel (with portrait).
 Some of His “Ways.” By W. L. Lang, F. R. G. S., Cheltenham.
 Notices of Books.
 Notes. (Pastor Thomas Spurgeon’s Return to the Tabernacle. Prayer-meetings at the Tabernacle. Mr. Spurgeon’s Sermons and other publications. Who Wrote the Poetry? College. College Missionary Association. Evangelists. Colportage. Personal Notes, by Mrs. C. H. Spurgeon.)
 Lists of Contributions.

 Price 3d. Post free, 4d.
 London: Passmore and Alabaster, Paternoster Buildings; and all Booksellers.


The Christian, Heaven
878 — Jesus Adored In Heaven <7s.>
1 Palms of glory, raiment bright,
   Crowns that never fade away,
   Gird and deck the saints in light,
   Priests, and kings, and conquerors they.
2 Yet the conquerors bring their palms
   To the Lamb amidst the throne,
   And proclaim in joyful psalms
   Victory through his cross alone.
3 Kings for harps their crowns resign,
   Crying, as they strike the chords,
   “Take the kingdom, it is thine,
   King of kings, and Lord of lords!”
4 Round the altar priests confess,
   If their robes are white as snow,
   ‘Twas the Saviour’s righteousness,
   And his blood that made them so.
5 Who were these? on earth they dwelt;
   Sinners once of Adam’s race;
   Guilt, and fear, and suffering felt;
   But were saved by sovereign grace.
6 They were mortal, too, like us:
   Ah! when we, like them, must die,
   May our souls, translated thus,
   Triumph, reign, and shine on high!
                  James Montgomery, 1829.


The Christian, Aspirations for Heaven
855 — The Sight Of God And Christ In Heaven
1 Descend from heaven, Immortal Dove,
   Stoop down and take us on thy wings,
   And mount and bear us far above
   The reach of these inferior things!
2 Beyond, beyond this lower sky,
   Up where eternal ages roll,
   Where solid pleasures never die,
   And fruits immortal feast the soul!
3 Oh for a sight, a pleasing sight,
   Of our Almighty Father’s throne!
   There sits our Saviour crown’d with light,
   Clothed in a body like our own.
4 Adoring saints around him stand,
   And thrones and powers before him fall;
   The God shines gracious through the Man,
   And sheds sweet glories on them all.
5 Oh what amazing joys they feel
   While to their golden harps they sing,
   And sit on every heavenly hill,
   And spread the triumphs of their King!
6 When shall the day, dear Lord, appear,
   That I shall mount to dwell above,
   And stand and bow amongst them there,
   And view thy face, and sing, and love?
                        Isaac Watts, 1709.

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).

Terms of Use

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.

Spurgeon Sermon Updates

Email me when new sermons are posted:

Privacy Policy

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Learn more

  • Customer Service 800.778.3390