2329. The Lamb Of God In Scripture

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No. 2329-39:481. A Sermon Delivered On Lord’s Day Evening, August 25, 1889, By C. H. Spurgeon, At The Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.

A Sermon Intended For Reading On Lord’s Day, October 8, 1893.

Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; and looking at Jesus as he walked, he says, “Behold the Lamb of God!” {Joh 1:35,36}

 For other sermons on this text:
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1060, “Behold the Lamb” 1051}
   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2329, “Lamb of God in Scripture, The” 2330}
   Exposition on Isa 40:1-17,25-31 Joh 1:29-42 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 3432, “Zeal of the Lord, The” 3434 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Joh 1:1-37 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2329, “Lamb of God in Scripture, The” 2330 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Joh 1:19-51 Mt 4:12-24 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2646, “Baptist’s Message, The” 2647 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Joh 1:29-51 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2375, “Found by Jesus, and Finding Jesus” 2376 @@ "Exposition"}
   Exposition on Mt 3:1-12 Joh 1:15-37 3:22-36 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2818, “Jesus and His Forerunner” 2819 @@ "Exposition"}

1. You all know the old, old story. The world was lost; God must punish sin; he sent his Son to take our sin on him so that he might honour the law of God, and establish God’s government by being obedient to the law, and yielding himself up to the death-penalty. He whom Jehovah loves beyond all else came to earth, became a man, and, as a man, was obedient to death, even the death of the cross. It is he who is called in our text “the Lamb of God,” the one Sacrifice for man’s sin. There is no putting away of sin without sacrifice; there is only one Sacrifice that can put away sin, and that is, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is divine, yet human; Son of God, yet Son of Mary. He yielded up his life, “the Just for the unjust,” the Sinless for the sinful, “that he might bring us to God,” and reconcile us to the great Father. That is the story, and whoever believes in him shall live. Any man, the world over, who will trust himself to Christ, God’s great Sacrifice, shall be saved, for this is our continual witness, “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life.” “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.”

2. Tonight I do not intend so much to preach a sermon as to urge those who have seen the Lamb of God to look at him more intently, to study him more, and especially to plead for the power of the Holy Spirit to reveal him to them. I want to entreat men, who have looked elsewhere, now to turn their eyes away from the fruitless search after peace and life, and to come and “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” May the Spirit of God open their eyes, and incline their hearts, so that tonight, even tonight, they may look to him and live!

3. When John saw Jesus Christ on that memorable day, he, first of all, beheld him himself, and then he said to others, “Behold the Lamb of God.” “Looking at Jesus as he walked,” steadfastly beholding him, watching him, gazing with humble admiration at him, he said, “Behold the Lamb of God!” Brethren, we cannot preach what we have not practised. If these eyes have never looked to Jesus, how can I tell your eyes to look at him? Beholding him, I found peace for my soul; I, who was disposed even to despair, rose from the depths of anguish to the heights of joy by looking to him; and I therefore dare to say to you, “Behold the Lamb of God!” Oh, that each one of you might believe our testimony concerning Jesus, and look to him and live!

4. What did John mean by saying “Behold the Lamb of God?” Behold, in the Latin, ecce , is a note of admiration, of wonderment, of exclamation. “Behold the Lamb of God!” There was nothing of greater wonder ever seen than that God himself should provide the Lamb for the burnt offering, that he should provide his only Son out of his very bosom, that he should give the delight of his heart to die for us. Well may we behold this great wonder. Angels admire and marvel at this mystery of godliness, God revealed in the flesh; they have never stopped wondering and adoring the grace of God that gave Jesus to be the Sacrifice for guilty men. Behold and wonder, never stop wondering; tell it as a wonder, think of it as a wonder, sing of it as a wonder; even in heaven you will not cease to wonder at this glorious Lamb of God.

5. I think that John also meant his disciples to consider when he said to them, “Behold the Lamb of God!” So we say to you, “Think of him, study him, know all that you can about him, look him up and down. He is God; do you understand that he stood in the sinner’s place? He is man; do you know how near akin he is to you, how sympathetic he is, a brother born for your adversity?” The person of Christ is a great marvel; how God and man can be in one person, it is impossible for us to tell. We believe what we cannot comprehend; and we rejoice in what we cannot understand. He whom God has provided to be your Saviour is both God and man; he can lay his hand on both parties, he can touch your manhood in its weakness, and touch the Godhead in its all-sufficiency. Study Christ; the most excellent of all the sciences is the knowledge of a crucified Saviour. He is most learned in the university of heaven who knows most about Christ. He who has known most about him still says that his love surpasses knowledge. Behold him, then, with wonder, and behold him with thankfulness.

6. But when John says, “Behold the Lamb of God!” he means more than wondering or considering. “Looking” is used in Scripture for faith: “Look to me, and be saved.” Therefore we sing —

    There is life for a look at the crucified One,
    There is life at this moment for thee!

7. Beholding is a steady kind of looking. Believe then, in Christ with a solid, enduring confidence. Come, you sinners, come, and trust your Saviour, not for tonight only, but for ever. Believe that he is able and willing to save you, and trust him to do so.

    Venture on him, venture wholly,
       Let no other trust intrude.

8. Take your eyes off everything else, and behold the Lamb of God! You need not see anything else, nothing else is worth seeing; but behold him. See how he takes your guilt, see how he bears it, see how he sinks under it, and yet rises from it, crying, “It is finished.” He gives up the ghost, he is buried, he rises again from the dead because he is accepted by God, and his redeeming work is done. Trust him, trust him, trust him. “Look and live,” is now our message; not “do and live,” but “live and do.” If you ask how you are to live, our answer is look, trust, believe, confide, rest in Christ, and the moment you do so, you are saved.

9. But, once more, when John said to his disciples, “Behold the Lamb of God!” it was a hint that they should stop looking at John, and turn their attention entirely to Jesus, and follow him. Hence we find that John’s two disciples left him, and became the disciples of Christ. Beloved, we who preach are longing to have your attention, but when you give your attention to us, our longing then is to pass it on to Christ our Lord. Look on him, and follow him, not us. What can we do, poor creatures that we are? Look to him, note his footsteps, tread in them. Do as he tells you, take him for your Lord, become his disciples, his servants. Behold the Lamb of God, and always behold him. Look to him, look up to him, and follow where he leads the way.

10. So I have put the text before you very simply. Now, I want to talk to you a little about beholding this Lamb of God, taking a hasty run through various Scripture references to the lamb; and I will ask you, first, to Behold the Lamb of God in his connections with men, and secondly, to Behold the Lamb of God in his blessings to men.

11. I. Let us, first, BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD IN HIS CONNECTIONS WITH MEN.

12. How was the Lamb of God first seen in the world? It was the case of the lamb for one man, brought by one man for himself, and on his own behalf. You all know that I refer to Abel, who was a shepherd, and brought from the firstlings of his flock, that is, a lamb, and he brought this lamb for himself, and on his own account, that he might be accepted by God, and that he might present to God an offering well-pleasing in his sight. Cain brought from the fruit of the ground as an offering to God. I think that there was a difference in the sacrifice, as well as in the man bringing it, for the Holy Spirit says little about the difference of the man, but he says, “By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain,” and he was accepted because he brought a more excellent sacrifice. The one sacrifice was bloodless, the fruit of the ground, the other was typical of Christ, the Lamb of God, and was therefore accepted: and “the Lord had respect for Abel, and for his offering.”

13. Now, beloved, our first view of Christ usually is here, to know him for ourselves. I am a sinner, and I want to have communion with my God; how shall I obtain it? I am guilty, I am sinful; how shall I draw near to the holy God? Here is the answer. Take the Lord Jesus Christ to be yours by faith, and bring him to God; you must be accepted if you bring Christ with you. The Father never repelled the Son, nor one who was clothed with the Son’s righteousness, or who pleaded the Son’s merit. Come, as Abel came, not with fruits of your own growing, but with the sacrifice of blood, with Christ the holy Victim, the spotless Lamb of God, and so coming, whoever you may be, you shall be acceptable before God by faith. Now, behold him, each one of you for yourself!

14. I know what someone will say, “I hope to do that eventually.” I hope you do not deceive yourself so. I have heard that there was once a great meeting in the den of the arch-enemy, and he was stirring up his myrmidons {a} to seek the destruction of men. One of them said, “I have gone out, and I have told men that there is no God, and no hereafter, and no difference between sin and righteousness, and that they may live as they like”; and there was considerable approbation among the evil spirits. But Satan himself said, “You have done little service, for man has a conscience, and his conscience teaches him better; he knows that there is a God, he knows that there is a difference between sin and righteousness, he knows that there must be future punishment; you have done very little.” Then another stood up, and said, “I have done better, I think, most mighty chieftain, for I have told them that who the Bible is a worn-out book, that it was a fable at the first, and that they need not believe it.” There was a round of cheers, for they said that he had done splendid service for the cause of darkness; but Satan said, “It is in vain that you meddle with the old Book, it has taken care of itself, and it can still do so. There is no shaking it, it is like a rock. You have done service for a time, but it will soon pass away.” And scarcely did anyone of the fallen spirits venture to bring forward his boasting in the presence of the terrible master who sat in the midst of them; but, at last, one said, “I have told men that they have souls, and that there is a God, and that the Bible is true. I have left them to believe as they wish, but I have whispered in their ear that there is plenty of time to consider all this.” Then there was a hush, and the great master of demons said, “You have done best of all. This is my great net in which I take more souls than with any other, this net of procrastination or delay.” Therefore I say to you, my hearers, disappoint the fiend. Flee to Jesus. Flee to Jesus at once. Behold, not tomorrow, but tonight, behold the Lamb of God, each man for himself.

15. Now turn over the pages of this grand old Book, and you will find the Lamb next in another setting. Israel was in Egypt, and there they had the lamb for the family;“ In the tenth day of this month they shall take for themselves every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for a household.” Oh, I wish that you would all go on to behold the Lamb of God for your households! “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved.” Why do you stop before you finish the verse? What did the apostle say to the trembling jailor? Not merely all that I have quoted, but more: “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved, and your household.” Are there not many believers who do not believe for their household? Come, now, and believe in this provision of the Lamb for the household. Trust the grace of God for that little girl, the last born, and for that boy who is still at school, who does not think much of these things as yet; and for that son of yours who has left home, and gone out as an apprentice. Oh, that the Lamb of God might be for him! Pray for him, tonight; and you older parents, pray for your sons and daughters who are married and are away from you. The Lamb is for the household, pray for the whole household tonight; take in your grandchildren, all you old folks, all of them who are in your household. Pray that the Lamb may be for the household. I bless God that I can look on all my household, and rejoice that they are converted to Christ. My father has this joy, too; and my grandfather also had that joy. Oh, it is a great bliss to have families, generation after generation, all brought to Christ without exception! Why should it not be so? Let us cry for it; surely we may expect the same blessing that God gave to his chosen people under the law, and expect it more largely. Grace does not run in the blood, but grace often runs side by side with it, so that Abraham is loved, and Isaac, and Jacob, and Joseph, and Ephraim, and Manasseh. So the covenant blessing goes on from one to another. Plead with God, tonight, that everyone in your household may be beneath the sprinkled blood of the Lamb, and be saved from the destroying angel, and that all with you may go out of Egypt to have a possession in the land of the promise.

16. A little further on, following the Scripture, and asking you still to behold the Lamb, in the twenty-ninth chapter of that famous Book of Exodus, we come across God’s command for the lamb for the people: “Now this is what you shall offer on the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually. The one lamb you shall offer in the morning; and the other lamb you shall offer in the evening.” {Ex 29:38,39} Here is the lamb for all the chosen people, the lamb for Israel. It began with the unit, it went on to the family; and here the Lord, who “loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob,” makes his tabernacle to be the central place where a lamb shall be offered for the whole nation. Think of it with delight, tonight, that Christ died for all his chosen people. He has redeemed them from among men. Though they are as many as the stars for number, or as innumerable as the sand on the sea-shore, yet that one Sacrifice has redeemed them all. Glory be to God for the blood of the Lamb, by which all of Christ’s people are redeemed!

17. Then let your mind take wing right out of the Old Testament into the New, for I do not have time to trace all the successive steps. Come now to John, saying in this chapter, “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” {Joh 1:29} Now you have gone beyond the bounds of Israel, and have come to the Lamb for the world. You have come to the Lamb of God, who dies for Gentiles as well as for Jews, for men in the isles of the sea, for men in the wilds of Africa, for men of every colour, and every nationality, and every time, and every clime. Oh, glory be to God, wherever there are men, we may go and tell them about Christ! Wherever there are men born of Adam’s race, we may tell them of the second Adam, to whom looking, those who look shall live, and in him they shall find eternal life. I love to think of the breaking down of the bounds that restricted the flow of grace to one nation. Behold, it flows over all Asia Minor, at first, and then over all Greece, and then to Rome, and Paul talks about going to Spain, and the gospel is borne across the sea to England, and from this country it has gone out to the utmost ends of the earth.

18. Well now, take your flight, if you can get beyond that, away to heaven itself, and there you will see the Lamb for all heaven. Look at Re 7:14; no, you need not look it up, for you know it. All the saints in heaven are standing in their glittering ranks, white-robed, pure as the driven snow. They sing and praise one glorious name; when one of the elders first asked the question, “Who are these who are arrayed in white robes, and where do they come from?” he himself gave the answer, “These are those who came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.”

    Round the altar priests confess,
    If their robes are white as snow,
    ’Twas the Saviour’s righteousness,
    And his blood that made them so.

The blood of the Lamb has whitened all the saints who are in heaven; they sing of him who loved them, and laved {washed} them from their sins in his own blood. I have often wondered why that second word was not brought into our translation, for it so beautifully fits the language of the beloved apostle John: “To him who loved us, and laved us from our sins in his own blood, and has made us kings and priests to God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” There is no whiteness in heaven except what the Lamb has wrought, no brightness there except what the Lamb has bought; everything there shows the wondrous power and surpassing merit of the Lamb of God.

19. If it is possible to think of something more glorious than I have already described, I think you will find it in the fifth chapter of the Revelation: “And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, I heard saying, ‘Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be to him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb for ever and ever.’ ” {Re 5:13} The day shall come when, from every place that God has made, there shall be heard the voice of praise to the Lamb; there shall be found everywhere men and women redeemed by blood, angels and glorious spirits, rejoicing to adore him who was, and is, and is to come, the Almighty Lamb of God.

20. I think I have given you something to consider if you turn over the pages of Scripture, and follow the track of the bleeding Lamb.

21. II. But now, taking you again over the same road a little, I want you, in the second place, to BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD IN HIS BLESSINGS TO MEN.

22. The first blessing of all is that of Abel. He was accepted by God; he offered a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain. Well now, let anyone here, who does not know it, try to learn this lesson tonight. You can only be “accepted in the Beloved.” God loves his Son with such an overflowing love that he has love enough for you, love enough for me, if we are in Christ Jesus. He is the great conduit or channel of God’s love, and that love flows through all the pipes to every soul that believes in Jesus. Hide behind your Lord, and you are safe. Trust his name, living and dying, and nothing can harm you. How many dear hearts, when passing through the valley of the shadow of death, when grim thoughts have clustered around them, have been cheered and comforted by the thought of Christ! Remember the monk who, as he died, put away the priest, and the crucifix, and everything else, and cried, “ Tua vulnera, Iesu! Tua vulnera, Iesu !”“ Your wounds, Jesus! Your wounds, Jesus!” I am not saved by what I can do, but by what he has done; not by what I have suffered, but by what he has endured. There hangs our everlasting hope; we trust in Christ in life and in death, and we are accepted for his sake. Come, every sinner, bring the Lamb of God; put him on the altar, and you shall be accepted at once, and you may at once begin to praise the name of the Lord.

23. But then, as we go on, we find this Lamb of God useful, not only for acceptance, but also for rescue and deliverance. It is a dark and dreadful night; Egypt shivers, and stands aghast; and just at twelve at night out flies an angel, armed with the sword of death. In every house of Egypt there is heard a wail, for the firstborn is dead, from the firstborn of Pharaoh to the firstborn of the woman who turns the mill to grind the daily grain. Death is in every house; no, stop; there are houses in which there is no death. What has secured those habitations? The father took a lamb, shed its blood, dipped the bunch of hyssop in it, and smeared the lintel and the two side-posts; and then all sat down and feasted on the lamb undisturbed, and calm, and happy. They rejoiced to have for food that lamb whose blood was the ensign of their safety. There was no crying there, no dying there; death could not touch the inhabitants of the house that was marked with the blood of the paschal lamb. Beloved, you and I are perfectly safe if we are sheltered beneath the blood of the Lamb of God; nothing can harm us, everything must bless us; and we may go to our beds tonight singing —

    Sprinkled afresh with pardoning blood,
       I lay me down to rest,
    As in the embraces of my God,
       Or on my Saviour’s breast.

We may rise tomorrow morning, if we are spared, and go into this busy world without any fear. The broad arrow {b} of the King is set on us in the blood-mark of the atoning sacrifice, and we are safe, and safe for ever. Glory be to the name of the Lord for this!

24. Nor was that all. As I have told you, the blood of the paschal lamb was not only sprinkled for the protection of the house, but its flesh was the food of the residents. Oh, brethren, we do not at first know what it is to feed on Christ! We are satisfied to be sprinkled with his blood; but the believer afterwards finds that Christ is the food of his soul. His blood is drink indeed, and his flesh is food indeed. Oh, what a festival we have kept over the person of our Lord! Sometimes, when faint and hungry, we have begun to think of the Incarnate God, the bleeding Lamb, the full atonement paid, and we have said, “My soul is full, satisfied with favour, full of the blessing of the Lord.” I do not know what there is in the gospel if you take away the atoning sacrifice; it seems to me that there would be nothing left but chaff, which might suit donkeys and horses, but would not be fit for men. Look to Jesus Christ dying in our place, and here is something for the soul to feed on, indeed and to be satisfied with, as with marrow and fatness!

25. I pointed you, a little further on, to the lamb in the wilderness, the lamb offered up every day; that brings us to another point in our Lord’s work. We have had Christ for acceptance, Christ for safety, and Christ for food, now we have Christ for perpetual resort. The Lamb of God in the morning! Oh, blessed be God for a Saviour in the morning! If the night has gathered anything of evil, he then disperses it, as the sun dispels the darkness. But oh, what a precious thing also to have the Lamb of God in the evening! If in the day we have soiled our feet in traversing this busy world, here we come to the fountain, and we are made clean through the blood of the Lamb. Perpetual merit, perpetual intercession, perpetual life-giving, perpetual salvation, flow from Jesus Christ the Lamb of God. He is not slain twice; his one wonderful offering has finished transgression, and made an end of sin; but its efficacy continues as though he were sacrificed often, always supplying us with merit, so that, in effect, his wounds continually bleed. He is always a new Saviour for me every morning, always a new Saviour every night, and yet always the same Saviour, the same Christ. There is no getting weary of him, there is nothing “stale” in him. They may talk about “a new view of the atonement.” I have no view of the atonement but this, “Who loved me, and gave himself for me”; “Who himself bore our sins in his own body on the tree”; and that old view of the atonement is ever fresh and ever new to the heart and conscience.

26. Well now, beloved, when we come to John again, following our former run of thought, we find the Lamb of God useful for guidance, for when John said, “Behold the Lamb of God,” the two disciples followed Jesus; and we read of some, “These are those who follow the Lamb wherever he goes.” The Lamb is our Guide. The Lord is a Shepherd as well as a Lamb, and the flock following in his footsteps is safely led. My soul, when you want to know which way to go, behold the Lamb of God! Ask, “What would Jesus do?” Then do what Jesus would have done in such a case, and you cannot go wrong.

27. Further on we find such a passage as this, telling us of victory through the Lamb of God: “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb.” The Lamb is a great Warrior; there is no one like him. Is he not the Lion of the tribe of Judah? Though he is gentle as a lamb, yet against sin and iniquity he is fiercer than a young lion when it roars over its prey. If we follow him, hold firm his truth, believe in his atonement, and perpetually proclaim his gospel, we shall overcome all error, and all sin, and all evil.

28. Well now, this blessed Lamb — it is not easy to stop talking about him when one once begins — is so blessed that you may well behold him, for all happiness comes through him. In heaven you will see nothing without him. “Nothing,” you say? No, nothing; here is a proof of my words. “The city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God illuminated it, and the Lamb is the light of it.” All the light, the knowledge, the joy, the bliss of heaven, come through the atoning sacrifice of Christ. Not Jesus only, but Jesus slain, Jesus the Lamb of God, is the very light of heaven.

29. And what, do you think, is the joyful day of heaven, the time for the highest exaltation? Why, the joyful day when all the golden bells shall peal out their glorious melodies, and all the silver trumpets shall ring out their jubilant notes, will be the day of the marriage of the Lamb. It is the heaven of heaven, the climax of ineffable delight; and the voice of the great multitude, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, sings, “Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigns. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready.” So that, at the topmost rung of the ladder of eternal bliss, you find the Lamb there. You cannot get beyond him. He gives you all he has, even himself. Behold him, then, and go on beholding him throughout the countless ages of eternity.

30. I wish that you had all beheld him, and I urge you to behold him tonight. It is only a little while, and the death-film will gather over your eyes; and if you have not seen the Lamb while you still have mortal eyes, you will see him, you will certainly see him, but your vision will be like that of Balaam, “I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not near.” If it is with you “not now,” it may be “not near.” It will be an awful thing to see the Lamb with a gulf between yourself and him, for there is a great, impassable gulf fixed in the next world; and when you see him across that gulf, how will you feel? Then you shall cry to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb!” Jesus will still be a Lamb, even to the lost; it is “the wrath of the Lamb” that they will dread. The Lamb is always conspicuous; he may be neglected, rejected, refused tonight, but he will be beheld in eternity, and beheld to your everlasting confusion and unutterable dismay if you refuse to behold him now. Let it not be so with any of you.

       Ye sinners, seek his face,
       Whose wrath ye cannot bear;
    Fly to the shelter of his cross,
       And find salvation there.

Amen.

{a} Myrmidon: An unscrupulously faithful follower or hireling; a hired ruffian; a base attendant. OED. {b} Broad Arrow: The arrowhead-shaped mark, used by the British Board of Ordnance, and placed on government supplies. OED.

Exposition By C. H. Spurgeon {Joh 1:1-37}

John is the majestic Evangelist; he is the high-soaring eagle with the piercing eye. His is the Gospel of the Son of God.

1-3. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.

We cannot describe the deity of Christ in clearer language than John uses. He was with God; he was God; he did the works of God, for he was the Creator. If any doubt his deity, they must do so in distinct defiance of the language of Holy Scripture.

4, 5. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in darkness; and the darkness did not comprehend it.

Christ is still not understood, Jesus is still not known. How should darkness understand light? It opposes light, it has to flee before light, but it does not, it cannot understand light. Oh God, work a miracle in our dark hearts, and fill them with the light of Christ!

6, 7. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, so that all men through him might believe.

That is our business, too. We who are ministers sent from God bear witness of the Light, so that all men through him may believe. Oh, how often we go home, and cry, “Who has believed our report?” We do not ask you to believe in us; no, but in our Master, whose heralds we are. If we can lead you to faith in him, we shall be glad indeed; but, if not, we will sorrow because we have missed our mark, and failed in our purpose.

8, 9. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which gives light to every man who comes into the world.

If any man has saving light, true light, he gets it through Christ. There is no other light; all other light is only visible darkness. The light in which we see God comes from Jesus.

10. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world did not know him.

It was strange that the Creator came to his own earth, and yet he was unknown. Men mistook him, they hated him, they crucified him whom they ought to have entertained with sacred hospitality, and worshipped with holy loyalty.

11, 12. He came to his own, and his own did not receive him. But as many as received him, he gave power to them to become the sons of God, even to those who believe in his name:

All men are not the sons of God; the doctrine of the universal Fatherhood is utterly untrue. They only become the sons of God who receive Christ, and believe in his name; otherwise they are heirs of wrath, even as others: “He gave power to them to become the sons of God.”

13. Who were born, not by blood, nor by the will of the flesh, nor by the will of man, but by God.

There is another birth besides the natural one; the birth of the flesh never makes us Christians. If our ancestry should be a line of saints yet we are born sinners; we must be born again if we are to become saints. If we could trace our pedigree to a perfect man, if there is such, yet the birth by the flesh would not avail us. Sons of God are “born, not by blood, nor by the will of the flesh, nor by the will of man, but by God.”

14. And the Word was made flesh,

Here was the incarnation of him who made all things. He who is God “was made flesh.”

14. And lived among us, (and we —

The apostles —

14. Beheld his glory, the glory as of the only-begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Oh, all you who would know Christ, learn that he is worth knowing! He is full of grace for your sinnership, and full of truth for your ignorance. He can cleanse and he can teach; there is everything in him that you need. You shall not be deceived, for he is full of truth; you shall not be rejected, for he is full of grace.

15-18. John bore witness of him, and cried, saying, “This was he of whom I spoke, ‘He who comes after me is preferred before me: for he was before me.’ ” And of his fulness we have all received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man has seen God at any time;

He is too high, too spiritual, to be perceived by human senses.

18. The only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has declared him.

What we need to know about God, we may see in Christ; enough to save us, enough to sanctify us, enough to make us all like the only-begotten Son of the Father.

19, 20. And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” And he confessed, and did not deny; but confessed, “I am not the Christ.”

With indignation he must have repelled the idea that he was the Messiah: “I am not the Christ.”

21-23. And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” And he says, “I am not.” “Are you that prophet?” And he answered, “No.” Then they said to him, “Who are you? that we may give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say concerning yourself?” He said, “I am ‘The voice —

Humbly he reduces himself to a voice; but he was not “a voice and nothing more.” There was much that was mighty and wise in that voice.

23-27. Of one crying in the wilderness, "Make straight the way of the Lord," as the prophet Isaiah said.’ ” And those who were sent were of the Pharisees. And they asked him, and said to him, “Why do you baptize then, if you are not that Christ, nor Elijah, neither that prophet?” John answered them, saying, “I baptize with water: but there stands one among you, whom you do not know; it is he who coming after me is preferred before me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to unloose.”

How John hides himself behind his Master! He was a most worthy man, a truly great man; but he thought himself unworthy of the most menial service for Christ, and felt honoured by filling the office of a slave to unloose his Master’s sandal strap. It is better to be the slave of Christ than to rule vast empires; he who truly serves him is glorified by it.

28, 29. These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. The next day John sees Jesus coming to him, and says, “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.

Now he is bringing out his message; now he is pointing out his Master.

30, 31. This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who is preferred before me: for he was before me.’ And I did not know him:

John knew Jesus very well; but he did not know him as the Sent One of God, the Messiah, until after he had received the sign and token at his baptism: “I did not know him.”

31-34. But that he should be revealed to Israel, therefore I am come baptizing with water.” And John bore record, saying, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. And I did not know him: but he who sent me to baptize with water, the same said to me, ‘On whom you shall see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I saw, and bore record that this is the Son of God.”

Jesus and John must have been well acquainted with each other; they were closely related, but John was not to know anyone as the Messiah until he received the sign from God. When he saw that sign, then he officially knew, and he bore instant witness: “This is the Son of God.”

35, 36. Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; and looking at Jesus as he walked,

With holy reverence, with loving awe, gazing on this extraordinary Person “as he walked,” —

36, 37. He says, “Behold the Lamb of God!” And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.

This is our one business tonight, to cry, “Behold the Lamb of God!”

 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Jesus Christ, Sufferings and Death — ‘They Crucified Him’ ” 278}
 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Jesus Christ, Names and Titles — Hiding Place” 381}
 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Gospel, Received by Faith — Just As I Am” 546}
 The Sword and the Trowel
 Table of Contents, October, 1893.
 Mr. Spurgeon’s First Outlines of Sermons preached in Cambridgeshire in 1851. May, June, July, 1851 (continued).
 A Cure for Tiredness. By Pastor C. M. Longhurst, Birmingham.
 The Founder of the White Ribbon Gospel Temperance Army, with Portrait of Mrs. S. M. Terrett.
 Out of the Valley of the Shadow; or Grace Triumphant. The Story of an Orphan Girl. By V. J. Charlesworth.
 Hints and Helps from the Margin of my Bible. By Pastor J. D. Gilmore, Brannoxtown.
 “Rutherford’s Witnesses.” Cited by Mrs. C. H. Spurgeon.
 Unpublished Notes of C. H. Spurgeon’s New Park Street Sermons. Reported by Pastor T. W. Medhurst, Cardiff. No. IV.
 The Round of the Prayer-meetings. X. Lake Road Chapel, Portsmouth.
 Memories of America. By Pastor Thomas Spurgeon. I. The Golden Gate, and San Francisco (Illustrated.)
 Norwegian Lepers and Mr. Spurgeon. A Holiday Experience, by J. Manton Smith.
 Good Society. By John Ritchie.
 A Memento of the “Five-mile Act.” By John Burnham.
 Burning the Shining Lights of Two Centuries Ago. By Pastor A. Parker, Harpole, Northamptonshire.
 How the Canary Ceased to Sing. By John Ritchie.
 Notices of Books.
 Notes. (Services and prayer-meetings at the Tabernacle. Meeting at Christ Church, Westminster Bridge Road. Who Wrote the Poetry? Annual Reports of Various Societies. College. College Missionary Association. Evangelists. Orphanage. Colportage. Baptisms at Metropolitan Tabernacle and Haddon Hall. Personal Notes, by Mrs. C. H. Spurgeon.)
 Lists of Contributions.

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Jesus Christ, Sufferings and Death
278 — “They Crucified Him”
1 Oh come and mourn with me awhile;
   Oh come ye to the Saviour’s side;
   Oh come together, let us mourn:
   Jesus, our Lord, is crucified.
2 Have we no tears to shed for him,
   While soldiers scoff and Jews deride?
   Ah! look how patiently he hangs;
   Jesus, our Lord, is crucified.
3 How fast his hands and feet are nail’d
   His throat with parching thirst is dried;
   His failing eyes are dimm’d with blood;
   Jesus, our Lord, is crucified.
4 Come let us stand beneath the cross;
   So may the blood from out his side
   Fall gently on us drop by drop;
   Jesus, our Lord, is crucified.
5 A broken heart, a fount of tears
   Ask, and thy will not be denied;
   Lord Jesus, may we love and weep,
   Since thou for us art crucified.
         Frederick William Faber, 1849, a.


Jesus Christ, Names and Titles
381 — Hiding Place
1 Awake, sweet harp of Judah, wake!
   Retune thy strings for Jesus’ sake:
   We sing the Saviour of our race,
   The Lamb, our shield and hiding place.
2 When God’s right arm is bared for war,
   And thunders clothe his cloudy car,
   Where — where — oh where shall man retire
   To escape the horror of his ire?
3 ‘Tis he — the Lamb — to him we fly,
   While the dread tempest passes by:
   God sees his well beloved’s face,
   And spares us in our hiding place.
4 While yet we sojourn here below,
   Pollutions still our hearts o’erflow:
   Fallen, abject, mean — a sentenced race,
   We deeply need a hiding place.
5 Yet, courage — days and years will glide,
   And we shall lay these clods aside;
   Shall be baptized in Jordan’s flood,
   And washed in Jesus’ cleansing blood.
6 Then pure, immortal, sinless, freed,
   We through the Lamb shall be decreed;
   Shall meet the Father face to face,
   And need no more a hiding place.
               Henry Kirke White, 1807.


Gospel, Received by Faith
546 — Just As I Am <8.8.8.6., or L.M.>
1 Just as I am — without one plea
   But that thy blood was shed for me,
   And that thou bidd’st me come to thee,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
2 Just as I am — and waiting not
   To rid my soul of one dark blot,
   To thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
3 Just as I am — though toss’d about
   With many a conflict, many a doubt,
   Fightings within, and fears without,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
4 Just as I am — poor, wretched, blind,
   Sight, riches, healing of the mind,
   Yea, all I need, in thee to find,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
5 Just as I am — thou wilt receive,
   Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
   Because thy promise, I believe,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
6 Just as I am — thy love unknown
   Has broken every barrier down,
   Now, to be thine, yea, thine alone,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
7 Just as I am — of that free love
   The breadth, length, depth, and height to prove,
   Here for a season, then above,
      Oh Lamb of God, I come.
                     Charlotte Elliott, 1836.

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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