2665. A Day To Be Remembered

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A Day To Be Remembered

No. 2665-46:109. A Sermon Delivered On Lord’s Day Evening, October 1, 1882, By C. H. Spurgeon, At The Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.

A Sermon Intended For Reading On Lord’s Day, March 11, 1900.

And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation is come to this house.” {Lu 19:9}

1. Observe, dear friends, that our Lord spoke this sentence to Zacchaeus. Some of us may have imagined that he said it to the objecting people, but he did not. They may have heard it, and their objection may have been answered by it, but the main purpose of our blessed Lord, in uttering those words, was not to answer objectors, but to comfort one who might feel dispirited by their murmuring remark. Therefore, “Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation is come to this house.’ ”

2. It is always better to comfort believers than to answer critics. The critics scarcely deserve a reply, for they are pretty sure to find fault again; it is according to their nature to do so. But as for the poor distressed people of God, who gladly receive the truth, and yet have to endure unkind observations, let these be cheered, for has not the Lord himself said, “Comfort, comfort my people”? Now, what could give Zacchaeus greater consolation than for the Lord Jesus Christ to bear witness to the fact of his salvation? “Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation is come to this house.’ ”

3. I imagine that I can hear some of you say, “We would consider it the happiest day in our lives if the Lord Jesus would come and tell us that salvation had come to us.” But, beloved, you cannot have him come, in the flesh, to say that to you, for he has gone away, to carry on his service elsewhere; among other things, he has gone to prepare a place for you who believe in him. But his Spirit is equally divine, and he is always with us; and you may have the Spirit of God bearing witness with your spirit that you are the children of God. Indeed, I trust that you not only believe that you may have this witness, but that you actually have had it, — you have had that secret, silent, inward evidence which no man understands but the one who receives it; and you know, in your own soul, that you have passed from death to life, because the Holy Sprit has sealed that truth on your heart. Therefore, dear friend, be joyful; yes, be very glad. If anything can make a man leap for joy, it ought to be the assurance of his eternal safety. If salvation has come to your heart, you ought to be as happy as an angel; I think that there are some reasons why you should be even happier, for an angel cannot know, by personal experience, the bliss of having his sins forgiven. You, who have experienced this wonderful blessing, ought to cause the wilderness and the solitary place to resound with the melody of your thanksgiving, and with the music of your grateful delight you should make even the desert to rejoice and blossom as the rose. Oh, what bliss it is to be assured by the Holy Spirit himself that you have passed from death to life, and that salvation has indeed come to you! May many of you enjoy that bliss from this very hour!

4. Now let us come directly to the text. “Today,” says Christ, “salvation is come to this house.” You will not forget the outline of the sermon, for it is very simple, and one that can be easily remembered. First, Today, — what? Secondly, Today, — why? Thirdly, Today, — why not?

5. I. First, TODAY, — WHAT? What about today?

6. Christ says, “Today salvation is come to this house.” He seemed to cut that day out of all the rest of time, and to say concerning it, “Today, — this particular day, — on this very day, — salvation is come to you.” Then, let today be a holy day, and let it be a holiday; let it be remembered for many a year; yes, let it be remembered throughout all time and throughout eternity, too: “today.”

7. You know that there are some people who observe certain days which God has not ordained to be kept in any special manner. The Galatians did so, and therefore Paul wrote to them, “I am afraid concerning you, lest I have bestowed on you labour in vain.” We do not judge those who act in a similar way today; but, still, like Paul, we are afraid concerning them; that is to say, we fear they are mistaken in what they do. But there are some days which God commanded to be observed.

8. The first was, the day when the work of creation was finished, concerning which we read, “On the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.” The completion of the creation, when “God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good,” deserves to be remembered. And does not the new creation also deserve to be remembered? When the Lord creates in a man a new heart and a right spirit, shall we not say, to each other, “Today — this joyful day — this divine day — this new creation day — is a day to be observed very specially?”

9. It is clear, from the practice of the apostles, that the Lord intends us to observe the first day of the week, because that was the day of Christ’s resurrection from the dead, the day of the completion of our redemption; and well may we commemorate the complete redemption even more than the complete creation. Shall not each saved man especially celebrate the day when he was redeemed from sin? Shall he not consider it worthy to be observed, with holy rites of preaching, praise, and prayer, and to be had in grateful remembrance as long as he lives? Each believer can say of the Lord’s day, “Today, the Lord redeemed my soul out of the land of the enemy, and set me free for ever.” God has appointed only one day to be kept sacred more than all others; that is the Lord’s day. Your Christmas days, and your Good Fridays, and all such seasons, are only observed by man’s ordinance; but the Sabbath is ordained by God, and that is to be observed as the emblem of rest. Now, surely, when a man comes into rest, and “we who have believed enter into rest,” then that day should be especially observed by him. It should become a Sabbath to the Lord throughout the man’s whole life, — that happy day in which salvation came to him. Let, then, “today” stand as a special day in your calendar; mark it with a red line, if you like; or mark it with a golden seal, and let it be held in remembrance for evermore.

10. Our Lord said to Zacchaeus, “Today salvation is come to this house.” From these words I learn, first, that salvation, is a speedy blessing. It can come to a house in a day; indeed, more, it can take possession of a man’s heart in a day; indeed, to go further, this great work can be accomplished in a single moment. I suppose that the new birth is actually a thing which requires no appreciable period of time; — a flash, and it is done. If a man is dead, and he is restored to life, there may be, in certain respects, a gradual operation on that man, and some time may elapse before he is able to walk; but there must be a certain instant in which there is life in the man, whereas, a moment before, there was no life in him. The actual quickening must be a thing that is instantaneous, so that the working of salvation in a man may not only be performed today, or this hour, or this quarter of an hour, but this minute, or even this second. Between light and darkness there is usually a period of twilight, and so there is in the soul; but, even in twilight, there is a measure of light, and there must be a moment when the first real beam of light begins to strike the ebonite darkness. So there must be a moment when grace first enters the soul, and the man, who before was graceless, becomes gracious. I think this is a good point to be remembered. You poor deluded souls, who hope to save yourselves by your own works, will have to keep on throughout your whole lives at that useless occupation, and even when you lie dying, you may be sure that you are not saved if you have been trusting in your own works. But he who believes in Christ Jesus is saved then and there, and he can joyfully sing, —

    ’Tis done! the great transaction’s done;
    I am my Lord’s, and he is mine.

This is a blessed fact, — that salvation can come to a soul this very hour; indeed, as I have already reminded you, long before the hand of that clock shall have reached the end of this hour, salvation may have entered into many hearts that are in this place, as truly as it entered into the house of Zacchaeus.

11. Next, I learn from our text that salvation is a discernible blessing: “Today salvation is come to this house.” Christ could see it, so that it was something which could be seen. Indeed, and salvation was also seen by Zacchaeus himself, and the fruits of it were soon seen by those who were in the house with him. Do not suppose that a man can be saved, and yet know nothing about the great change that has been accomplished in him. It is not every man who can say for certain that he is saved, for faith is a thing of growth, and assurance may not come at once; but when a man is really and completely saved, he has only to use the proper means, and he may become absolutely certain of it. God the Holy Spirit is willing and waiting to give the full assurance of faith and of understanding to those who seek it from his hands.

12. Next, salvation is a perfect blessing: “Today salvation is come to this house.” Well, but only as recently as yesterday, that man had not even seen Jesus. Half-an-hour ago, he was climbing a tree, like a boy might have done, with no wish but just to get a sight of Jesus; and, now, that man is saved! “Yes,” says Christ, “today salvation is come to this house.” “But, surely, you do not talk as positively as that concerning a man who came here tonight unsaved, and who has just trusted in Jesus. You must mean that he has reached a hopeful stage in his experience, and that, after several years, he may perhaps come to be really assured that he is a saved man.” I mean nothing of the kind; I mean just what the text implies, which is that, the moment the Lord Jesus Christ crossed the threshold of the house of Zacchaeus, his sins were forgiven him, his heart was renewed, his spirit was changed, and he was a saved man. “But,” someone asks, “is anyone ever saved before he dies?” Yes, certainly. Were those people dead of whom Paul wrote, “For the preaching of the cross is to those who perish foolishness; but to us who are saved it is the power of God.” They were living men and women, yet the apostle said that they were saved, and so they were. And, at the present moment, here are hundreds of thousands of believers in Jesus, on the face of this earth, who are as truly saved now as they will be when they stand before the burning throne of God “without spot, or wrinkle or any such thing.” In God’s judgment, by virtue of the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ on whom they are resting by faith, they have been delivered from condemnation, they have escaped from the dominion of sin, and, in a word, they are saved. So, you see dear friends, that salvation is a perfect blessing.

13. Notice, next, that it is a much-containing blessing. A man who believes in Christ is saved immediately, but he does not fully know how much that word “saved” means yet. It is like a big box that comes into the house, and you begin to open it, and to take out first one thing and then another. “There,” you say, “that is all.” “Oh, no!” someone says, who looks more carefully, “here is another package.” “Well, then, that is surely all; there is nothing but straw now at the bottom of the box.” You put your hand in, and you cry, “Why! there is something more, and something more; what a boxful it is!” And what a boxful salvation is! You have no idea what there is in it, — not only the pardon of sin, but justifying righteousness; not only that, but regeneration, a new heart, and a right spirit; not only that, but sanctification, adoption, acceptance, power in prayer, preservation, perseverance, victory; — yes, we are to be more than conquerors through him who has loved us; — and all that is in the box. Indeed, and more too; for we are to have a safe and happy departure out of this world, and an abundant entrance into the everlasting kingdom of God our Father. All that is in the box; and all that had come into the house of Zacchaeus when the Lord Jesus Christ came there; and you also have all that if you have Christ, for it is all in Christ. You know how he said, “All things are delivered to me by my Father”; and Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “All things are yours: whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; and you are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.” You will never get to the bottom of that box which bears the name “salvation.” However great your needs may be, you may keep on taking out of it all that you require, and still there shall be more left; or, to change the metaphor, salvation is a springing well, from which the more you draw the more there is remaining, for drawn wells are always the sweetest, and usually the fullest. So, bring your buckets to this great well of gospel grace that is springing up at your very feet. So, you see that salvation is an all-containing blessing.

14. And, next, it is a spreading blessing, for salvation had come to the house of Zacchaeus, — not to himself only, but to his wife, his children, and his servants, I hope it means. I never like to have the servants left out, though I am afraid that they often are. You servants who live in Christian families, take care that you do not get left out; for, remember that Noah, although he was a good man, did not get one servant into the ark with him and his family. Remember Lot also, he was a good man of a very poor kind, and he only got his two children out of Sodom, and no servant went with them. It is a sad thing when you live and labour in the midst of Christian people, and yet you yourselves remain unsaved. I hope and believe that, in the case of Zacchaeus, all in his house were saved when salvation came there.

15. But, once more, the salvation which had come to the house of Zacchaeus, was an enduring blessing, for I never read that it went away again. If salvation comes to a man’s house, it comes to stay there, as Christ said to Zacchaeus, “I must stay at your house.” I can never believe in a man being saved for a time, and then falling from grace, and having to begin all over again. If he does not hold on his way to the end, it is clear that he never was really saved at all. As I have often told you, I can understand a man being regenerated, that is, being born again; but then some people tell us that it is possible for him, afterwards, to fall away from grace. But what is to become of him the next time? Why, I suppose that he must be re-regenerated, — born again and again; but I never read, in Scripture, anything of the kind. A man may be born again once, but he cannot be born again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again. That cannot be; when the work of regeneration is done once, it is done for ever. The work of man comes to an end, but the work of God does not fail. What is born by God is as immortal as God himself; the new life, that comes into the converted man from God, cannot die. How often do we ring in the ears of our friends those glorious words of our Lord, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, who gave them to me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.” Happy is the man to whose house salvation comes, for it comes to stay world without end.

16. That must suffice for the first point, Today, — what?

17. II. Now, secondly, we are to think of another aspect of the subject, that is, TODAY, — WHY? Why had salvation come to the house of Zacchaeus that day?

18. I answer, — because, that day, Zacchaeus was called by effectual grace and whenever effectual grace comes to anyone, it brings salvation. “Therefore, brethren,” as Peter says, “give diligence to make your calling and election sure,” for these are the “things that accompany salvation.” If you are sure that you are called by God, you may be quite certain that you are saved, for “today” — the day in which a man is effectively called by grace, — today salvation comes to his house. Look, dear friends, God chose his people in his everlasting purpose, but salvation did not come to their houses that day. They knew nothing about it at that time, for they were not born yet. Christ redeemed his people when he died on the cross, but salvation did not come to their houses that day, for most of them were not then in existence. But, in the fulness of time, the gospel was preached to them, and they heard it; yet, in all cases, salvation did not come to their houses that day, for though they heard it, they refused it. But the moment that effectual grace says to anyone, “Today I must stay at your house,” that grace at once gains admission, and salvation comes then and there to that man’s house. You remember how the apostle Paul wrote to the Romans: “Whom he called, those he also justified: and whom he justified, those he also glorified.” These great blessings are joined together, like the links of a chain, and you cannot pull them asunder. There is the calling that fits into the justification, and the chain is so made that the two links never can be separated. And then justification fits into glorification in such a way that you cannot possibly part them. It is no use for anyone to try to separate them. The devil may pull and hammer as much as he ever likes, but all his efforts will be in vain. I have sometimes compared that passage in Romans to a vast suspension-bridge between earth and heaven: “For whom he foreknew, he also predestinated to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he predestinated, those he also called: and whom he called, those he also justified: and whom he justified, those he also glorified.” If you get your foot firmly resting on that great plank of effectual calling, you may be quite sure that you will be able to cross all the rest of the bridge, and will most certainly reach the other side, and be “for ever with the Lord.”

19. But how do we know that Zacchaeus was really called? I answer in such a way that you may know whether you also are called or not. The call of Zacchaeus was an effectual call, first, because it was a personal call. He was up in the sycomore tree, and he heard Christ call, “Zacchaeus.” “Why!” he said to himself, “That is my name; he is calling me.” “Zacchaeus, hurry, and come down.” “Then he can see that I am up here; his description exactly fits my case.” Now, when you come and hear me preach the gospel, I try to put the truth before you in a clear and very pointed manner. Some people say that it is wrong to be personal in preaching, but I always try to be as personal as I ever can. Yet I know that many of my hearers pass on to their neighbours and friends what I say to them. “Oh! that just fits Mrs. So-and-so,” someone says. No, my dear sir, — it is meant for you, but you will not take it home to yourself. But when the Lord Jesus Christ himself calls, then the man says, “Dear me! I do not believe that the preacher can see me right away here, yet he is speaking straight at me; I am sure that he is. How exceptional! He just mentioned something that cannot have occurred to anyone but me; he has exactly described my case.” Those are the times when God is about to bless the soul, — when the man feels himself picked out from the rest of the congregation, and the gospel sharpshooter is just covering him with his rifle of grace. I pray that the blessed bullet of the gospel may find its billet in the very centre of your heart, and bring you down at the feet of Jesus as a weeping penitent: “Zacchaeus!” The Lord knew that was the name of the man up in the sycomore; and he also knows your name and your character; and when he intends to call you by his effectual grace, he will hold your photograph up, and make you say, “Yes, that is my picture; there is no one else exactly like that.”

20. Next, it was a royal call. Jesus said to Zacchaeus, “Today I must stay at your house.” One of our proverbs says, “Must is for the king”; and when the King speaks, he must be obeyed. We who are his ministers try to be very pressing and urgent; but when the Master himself utters the call, where the word of that King is there is power. I hope he is saying to someone here, “Today I must stay in your heart.” Now you have come to the point when you also will have to say, “I must.” There must be no turning back now, dear friend; you must not say to Christ, “Go your way for this time.” No; but you must say, “This present time is the time when I also will say ‘must’ as Christ says it to me.” That is an effectual call when it comes as a royal mandate, a warrant from the King: “I must.”

21. Then, next, it was a call which produced immediate obedience. The Lord said to Zacchaeus, “Hurry, and come down”; and we read, “He hurried, and came down.” I think I see him coming down that tree a great deal faster than when he had gone up; he had not moved at such a rate as that for a long while; but he scurried down, for he was told to hurry by One whose command compelled him to obey. When the Lord Jesus Christ calls any of you effectually, you will not put off your decision until the next morning; you will not say, “I will wait until I can get home and pray”; you will not even say, “I will wait until the end of the service, and then talk with a Christian person”; but your prayer will be, “Lord, help me to look to Jesus now. I yield myself up to you this very instant. I am in a hurry about it. Lord, I am hurrying to get to you; hurry to come and save me. I would not delay a single second longer. I want to be yours alone, and yours at once.” That is a sign of effectual calling, when immediate obedience is given to the call.

22. Another sign in the case of Zacchaeus was, that it was joyful obedience;“ He hurried, and came down, and received him joyfully.” Oh! the joy of the heart that receives Christ when Christ himself really comes to the soul! The moment I believed in Christ, I wanted to shout “Hallelujah”; and if I had done so, I think that I might have been forgiven. The moment one believes in Christ, and knows that his sin is all gone, what extravagance would be extravagant under such circumstances? Is not the man justified in being joyful when at length his iniquity is blotted out, and his transgression is covered? It is a sign of effectual calling when we receive Christ joyfully.

23. In the case of Zacchaeus, observe that his obedience was complete, for Christ said, “Today I must stay at your house”; and “he hurried, and came down, and received him joyfully” at his house, for the people murmured because Christ had gone to be his guest. Now, dear friends, will you also receive Christ? That is the point. Are you willing to let him come to you, and be your salvation? Are you eager that he should come? Do you beg him to come? Depend on it, he will come to you when you are ready to receive him; but take care not to trust for salvation in anything else or anyone else but Christ. Be satisfied with nothing but the ever-living Saviour to be your Saviour from first to last.

24. There was yet one more sign of the effectual calling of Zacchaeus, and that was that, he received Christ in a spiritual sense, for he did not only take him into his house, but he took him into his heart. I know that he did so because he began at once to purge his heart by driving out covetousness. That was a splendid way of getting rid of it when he said, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor.” Then he began to drive out his former grasping habit, for he said, “And if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.” That was clear evidence that he meant to receive Christ, in all his holy, gracious teaching, not merely as a man and a stranger; but, spiritually, as his Master, his Ruler, his Teacher, his Guide, — in a word, as his Saviour.

25. III. Now, lastly, TODAY — WHY NOT?

26. And now I change the day altogether, for I mean this very day when I am speaking to you, this first of October in the present year of grace. “Today.” Today, — why not? Why should we not, “today,” give ourselves to Christ. I have tried to think of any reason why a man should not give himself up to the Lord Jesus Christ today, and I cannot find one. Then, why should he give himself to Christ today, on this particular day? I think I know several reasons why he should do so.

27. First, it is late enough. Surely you do not want to wait any longer, How old did you say you are, friend? Seventy-six? Eighty-six? What! as old as that, and not yet saved? You do not need one like me, so much younger, to urge you to speedy decision. Or did you say that you are not more than my own age, — not yet fifty? Well, I find it is quite late enough for me. There are certain influences and sensations creeping over me, which make me realize that I am somewhat different from what I used to be, and I expect it is the same with you. I think it is getting rather late in life for you to be still undecided. Perhaps some younger person says, “But I am only twenty-one.” Well, that is late enough to be without Christ; it is a thousand pities that the devil should have had twenty-one years of your life. I was converted to the Lord Jesus Christ when I was fifteen, but I wish it could have been fifteen years before. Oh, that I had known and loved him as soon as I knew anything, and had lisped his name with the first words I ever uttered! I think every Christian will say the same. Whatever our age is, the time past may well suffice to have performed the will of the flesh. Do you not think so, my friend? Have you not had quite enough of sin? What profit have you ever received from it? It is surely quite late enough for you to receive Christ as your Saviour.

28. And, further, it is late enough in the year. It seems to me, when the leaves are falling all around you, as if they all said to you, “We all fade as a leaf.” Is it not fully time to seek the Lord? I know of no season that seems more suited for pensive thought than just now when the year seems to be weeping itself into its tomb, and burying itself amid falling leaves. Now is the time to yield yourself to the Lord; there cannot be a better period than just now, — before the year is fully gone.

29. The mercy is, dear friend, that, though it is quite late enough, it is not too late for anyone here. There is still time for you to seek the Lord. It is a pity to have put the Lord off until you yourself have gotten into the sere and yellow leaf; but yet there is time to turn to him. What! have you reached the eleventh hour of life? It is late, it is very late; but, still, it is not yet too late. It is not yet too late even if you are to die this week; and there are some out of this great company who will, I suppose, pass into the unseen world this week. Dear friend, I do not know who you are, but you who stand nearest to your eternal destiny, it is not yet too late even for you. Please, grasp at once the great mercy now offered to you. May God help you to do so!

30. Every week, I have to hear of some out of our number who have passed away. There have been some this last week, and some whom I certainly thought we might have had with us for a long time. They were, apparently, in good health, yet now they are to be buried at the beginning of the week, for they have gone from us quite suddenly. And why may not some of you be the next to be taken? Do not postpone your decision any longer; I wish that we could say tonight, “Today, October 1st, some soul received salvation. Let the recording angel mark it down.” The harvest is not quite over, though I thought it was. We down south have almost forgotten it, but there is a farming friend up with us today, who said to me, “We have not finished our harvest, for we have not gotten the beans in yet.” So, you see, the harvest is not quite over, but I do not want you to have to say, “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” I would like to get some of you to come in with the beans, just with the last crop. Oh, that you might be brought to Christ just at this tail-end of the harvest! The Master is willing that you should come to him even now, so do not delay. “Today, if you will hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.” “Behold, now is the accepted time: behold, now is the day of salvation.”

31. Remember, also, that today is gospel time. Still Christ is preached to you, the door of mercy is still wide open before you, the cry is still “Come” uttered by the Spirit, and the bride, the Lamb’s wife echoes it, “Come.” The water of life is still freely flowing for all who are willing to receive it.

32. Remember, too, that this is praying time. You are still on praying ground; a prayer will still find God. A traveller tells us that, when he was in the East, he saw the procession of a Sultan passing through a certain city. The monarch was there, all bedecked with gems and every kind of barbaric ornament, and surrounded by his guards. There was a poor wretch who wanted to get a petition to the Sultan, and he did not know how to manage it. He had no money with which to bribe the officials, and he could not force his way through the armed men; so, in his desperation, he got near enough to throw the petition down at the monarch’s feet, but one of the soldiers stuck a spear through it, and he held it aloft, and that was the end of it, for the Sultan took no notice of the incident, he was much too great a man to attend to the petition of his poor subject. It is never so with God. Cast your petition, however you can, at his dear feet, he will answer it, and send you on your way rejoicing.

33. You are not only on praying ground, for tonight seems to me to be a very auspicious season, for it is communion time. God’s people are presently coming together around his table to remember Christ. Will you not also remember him? We are about to receive Christ spiritually through the emblems of bread and wine which will represent him to us. Why should you not also receive Christ, in a spiritual way, by faith, as your Saviour? Oh, that you would press through the throng, and bow at the feet of Jesus Christ, our Lord! If you do so, he will accept you, and again it shall be said, “Today salvation is come to this house.” May God grant it, for Christ’s sake! Amen.

Exposition By C. H. Spurgeon {Lu 18:35-19:10}

18:35-39. And it came to pass, that as he was come near to Jericho, a certain blind man sat by the wayside begging: and hearing the multitude pass by, he asked what it meant. And they told him, that Jesus of Nazareth passes by. And he cried, saying, “Jesus, you son of David, have mercy on me.” And those who went before rebuked him, that he should hold his peace:

“Hush!” they cried; “how can you disturb the blessed Master’s discourse? Be quiet.”

39, 40. But he cried so much the more, “You son of David, have mercy on me.” And Jesus stood, —

Prayer held him firmly. Here is a stationary Saviour, held in his place by the cries of a blind man. Oh, the power of prayer! It stops the onward march of the Son of God: “Jesus stood,”

40, 41. And commanded him to be brought to him: and when he was come near, he asked him saying, “What do you wish that I shall do for you?” And he said, “Lord, that I may receive my sight.”

It is a great thing to know what you really do want. There are some people who are so blind that they do not know that they are blind; and because they say, “We see,” therefore their blindness is the more intense. I fear that there is many a person, who professes to pray, yet who, if Christ should come into the room, and say, “What do you wish that I shall do for you?” would not know how to answer the question. This man did; and he said, very briefly, and very clearly, but in a very full way, “Lord, that I may receive my sight.”

42. And Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight:

Often, the blessing from Christ’s lips is the echo of the prayer which fell from ours. The blind man said, “Lord, that I may receive my sight.” Echo answered, “Receive your sight.”

42, 43. Your faith has saved you.” And immediately he received his sight, —

See how the prayer, the word of Christ, and the immediate effect of it, all tally. “That I might receive my sight.” “Receive your sight.” “He received his sight.”

43. And followed him, —

Christ does not like blind followers: “and followed him,” —

43. Glorifying God: and all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.

They seemed to be greatly impressed, but we shall see that some of them soon spoke in another manner.

19:1 And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho.

There was to be a miracle at each end of Jericho. Long before, it had been cursed; now it was to have a double blessing.

2. And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus who was the chief among the publicans, —

That is, tax collectors, —

2. And he was rich.

As they often were, for they farmed the taxes, and then squeezed every farthing they could out of the people.

3. And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the crowd, because he was little of stature.

That was a fortunate thing for him. We need not all wish to be so tall as some people are. Perhaps Zacchaeus would not have gone up the sycomore tree if he had been a tall man; but the whole story turns on something which many regard as a disadvantage: “he was little of stature.”

4-7. And he ran ahead, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry, and come down; for today I must stay at your house.” And he hurried, and came down, and received him joyfully. And when they saw it, they all murmured, —

There is a great contrast between this verse and the last one in the previous chapter: “All the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.” Here it is, “When they saw it, they murmured.” Yet, very likely, many of them were the same people; certainly, they were the same kind of people that we hear about every now and then: “When they saw it, they all murmured.” There are far too many of that kind still around; we do not quite know who they are, nor where they are, they have a kind of nondescript, mysterious existence that finds expression in the words, “They say such-and-such and such-and-such.” They have been saying something about the minister, something about the Sunday School, something about the Bible class, something about your work and mine. You see, there always were such people around, and they always would talk, and their talk often took the form of complaining: “When they saw it, they all murmured,” —

7. Saying, that he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.

If he had not done so, he could not have gone anywhere, for all men are sinners. “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” But this man was a sinner more than others, for he had sold himself to the hated Roman power, and was authorized to collect the conqueror’s taxes from his own people; so, of course, in the estimation of the Jews, he was the worst kind of sinner that could be found anywhere.

8. And Zacchaeus stood, —

And he did not talk at all like a sinner, —

8. And said to the Lord; “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; —

Some of those saints, as they considered themselves, had not done anything like as much as that: “The half of my goods I give to the poor”; —

8. And if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.”

Which restitution was an act of justice; and when charity and justice go hand in hand, what more can we expect of men?

9, 10. And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation is come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save those who were lost.”

And that day he had both sought and saved one of the lost ones, for he had found Zacchaeus up in the sycomore tree, and he had brought salvation to the tax collector’s house. May he do the same for many who are here!

 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “The Christian, Dedication To God — ‘My Beloved Is Mine And I Am His’ ” 660}
 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “Jesus Christ, Names and Titles — The Way” 408}
 {See Spurgeon_Hymnal “The Christian, Dedication To God — The Heart Given To God” 658}

The Christian, Dedication To God
660 — “My Beloved Is Mine And I Am His”
1 When I had wander’d from his fold,
      His love the wanderer sought;
   When slave like into bondage sold,
      His blood my freedom bought.
2 Therefore that life, by him redeem’d,
      Is his through all its days;
   And as with blessings it hath teem’d,
      So let it teem with praise.
3 For I am his, and he is mine,
      The God whom I adore!
   My Father, Saviour, Comforter,
      Now and for evermore.
4 When sunk in sorrow, I despair’d,
      And changed my hopes for fears,
   He bore my griefs, my burden shared,
      And wiped away my tears.
5 Therefore the joy by him restored,
      To him by right belongs:
   And to my gracious loving Lord,
      I’ll sing through life my songs:
6 For I am his, and his is mine,
      The God whom I adore!
   My Father, Saviour, Comforter,
      Now and for evermore!
                     John S. B. Monsell, 1863.

Jesus Christ, Names and Titles
408 — The Way
1 Jesus, my all, to heaven is gone,
   He whom I fix’d my hopes upon,
   His track I see, and I’ll pursue
   The narrow way, till him I view.
2 The way the holy prophets went,
   The road that leads from banishment,
   The King’s highway of holiness,
   I’ll go, for all his paths are peace.
3 No stranger may proceed therein,
   No lover of the world and sin;
   Wayfaring men, to Canaan bound,
   Shall only in the way be found.
4 This is the way I long have sought,
   And mourn’d because I found it not;
   My grief and burden long have been,
   Because I could not cease from sin.
5 The more I strove against its power,
   I sinn’d and stumbled but the more;
   Till late I heard my Saviour say,
   “Come hither, soul! I am the Way!”
6 Lo! glad I come; and thou, blest Lamb,
   Shalt take me to thee, as I am;
   Nothing but sin have I to give;
   Nothing but love shall I receive.
7 Now will I tell to sinners round,
   What a dear Saviour I have found;
   I’ll point to thy redeeming blood,
   And say, “Behold the way to God!”
                        John Cennick, 1743, a.

The Christian, Dedication To God
658 — The Heart Given To God
1 Oh happy day, that fix’d my choice
   On thee, my Saviour, and my God;
   Well may this glowing heart rejoice,
   And tell its raptures all abroad.
2 ‘Tis done! the great transaction’s done:
   I am my Lord’s, and he is mine:
   He drew me, and I follow’d on,
   Charm’d to confess the voice divine.
3 Now rest, my long divided heart;
   Fix’d on this blissful centre, rest:
   With ashes who would grudge to part,
   When call’d on angels’ bread to feast?
4 High heaven, that heard the solemn vow,
   That vow renew’d shall daily hear:
   Till in life’s latest hour I bow,
   And bless in death a bond so dear.
                     Philip Doddridge, 1755.

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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