3273. A Sermon to Ministers and Other Tried Believers

by Charles H. Spurgeon on July 1, 2021
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No. 3273-57:505. A Sermon Delivered On Lord’s Day Evening, During The Summer Of 1881, By C. H. Spurgeon, At The Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.

A Sermon Published On Thursday, October 26, 1911.

Casting all your care on him; for he cares for you. {1Pe 5:7}

 

For other sermons on this text:

   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 428, “Cure for Care, A” 419}

   {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 3273, “Sermon to Ministers and Other Tried Believers, A” 3275}

   Exposition on 1Pe 1; 5:1-9 {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 2707, “Antidote to Satan’s Devices, An” 2708 @@ "Exposition"}

 

1. This time of depression in business {a} has brought great care to many a house and heart, especially to village pastors and their flocks. Their troubles have been heavy, and I am afraid their cares have not been light. Few have escaped the pinch of these hard times: the most prosperous have to watch the ebbing tide, and ask, — How long shall these things be? The subject will be timely for us all.

2. A very good preface to any sermon is the context; let us look at the passage before us. The verse preceding it is, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time.” If we are truly humble, we shall cast our care on God, and by that process our joy will be exalted. We are slow to submit to the hand of God, and often our care is fretful rebellion against our heavenly Father’s will. We determine to carve for ourselves, and so we cut our fingers. I saw on a cart only yesterday the name of a tradesman who calls himself “Universal Provider”: do we not aspire to some such office? There is a Universal Provider, and if we are humble under his hand, we shall leave our matters in his hands. Oh, for more humility, for then we shall have more tranquillity. Pride begets anxiety, true humility gives birth to patience.

3. The verse which follows our text is this: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, like a roaring lion, walks around seeking whom he may devour.” Cast your care on God, because you need all your powers of thought to battle with the great enemy. He hopes to devour you by care. Cast all your care on God, for if you are worried you cannot be sober or watchful. Satan rides on the back of carnal care, and so obtains entrance into the soul. If he can distract our minds from the peace of faith by temporal cares, he will get an advantage over us.

4. The preface permitted more discussion, but I have compressed it with stern economy of time. I must condense with equal rigor all through my discourse. We will first expound the text, and then enforce it.

5. I. First, let us EXPOUND THE TEXT: “Casting all your care on him; for he cares for you.”

6. It is noteworthy that, in the Greek, the two words for “care” are different; hence the 1881 English Revised Version reads, “Casting all your anxiety on him; because he cares for you.” The care which you are to cast on God, is wearing you out, and you are to cast it on God because, in quite another sense, “he cares for you.” The word used in reference to God is applied to caring for the poor, and in another place to the watchfulness of a shepherd. Our anxiety and God’s care are two very different things. His care, though tender and comprehensive, causes no anxiety for him, for his great mind is more than equal to the task; but our care ferments within us, and threatens the destruction of our narrow souls. You are to cast your care, which is folly, on the Lord, for he exercises a care which is wisdom. Care is exhausting for us, but God is all-sufficient. Care is sinful for us, but God’s care of us is holy. Care distracts us from service, but the divine mind does not forget one thing while remembering another.

7. If our care is to be cast on God, we are by hereby led to make a distinction; for there is a care which we could not dare to cast on God, it would be blasphemy to attempt it. Anxiety to grow rich; can we impart that to God? Anxiety to be famous, to live in luxury, to avenge an injury, to magnify myself; can I ask the Most High to bear such an anxiety for me? If any of you are vexed with such care; I charge you to fling it off, for it is like the poisoned tunic of Hercules; {b} and unless you can tear it away, it will burn into your very soul. All cares of covetousness, anger, pride, ambition, and wilfulness must be cast to the winds; it would be criminal to dream of casting them on God. Do not pray about them, except that God will redeem you from them. Let your desires be kept within a narrow circle, and your anxieties will be lessened at a stroke.

8.Casting,” says the apostle. He does not say “laying all your care on him,” but he uses a much more energetic word. You have to cast the load on the Lord; the act will require effort. It is no child’s play to cast all our care on our Lord when there are six little children, worn-out shoes, cupboard bare, purse empty, and the deacons talking about reducing the scanty salary. Here is a work worthy of faith. You will have to lift with all your soul before the burden can be moved, and the anxiety cast on the Lord; that effort, however, will not be half so exhausting as the effort of carrying your load yourself. Oh, the burden of watching and waiting for help which never comes; depending on the help of man, who is altogether vanity. Oh, the weariness of carrying a heart-breaking anxiety, and yet standing up to preach! We have all seen statues of Atlas bearing the world on his shoulders, but we can hardly conceive of his preaching in that posture. It would be better to make one tremendous effort, and be done with it, rather than groan under a perpetual weight. If the fox is eating into our heart, let us pluck it from our bosom and kill it at once.

9. Note, next, the words, “on him.” You may tell your griefs to others to gain their sympathy, for we are told to bear each other’s burdens; you may ask friends to help you, and so exercise your humility; but let your requests to man be always in subordination to your waiting on God. Some have obtained their full share of human help by much begging from their fellow Christians; but it is a nobler thing to make known your requests to God; and, somehow, those who beg only from God are amazingly sustained where others fail. What a pleasant story is that in which we recount the lovingkindnesses of the Lord, and tell how “this poor man cried, and the Lord heard him.” Quiet, patient believers have come under my notice who have carried their cross in silence, waiting only on the Lord. How they endured their trial I cannot tell, except that “they endured, as seeing him who is invisible”; but their necessity became known, it leaked out, they did not know how, and they were helped, and helped better than they would have been if their appeal had been to man. I am condemning no appeal to our fellow believers; many are willing to help, and they cannot do so if the need is unknown; but do not place anyone in the office and throne of the great God, who alone is the Caretaker and Burden-Bearer of his people. I am afraid that, sometimes, in our care not to alienate this great man who does so much for the cause, or that excellent lady who takes half-a-dozen sittings in the chapel, we may grieve the Lord and lose our true Helper. Cease, then, from man; cast all your care on God, and on him only.

10. Certain courses of action are the very opposite of casting all your care on God, and one is indifference. Whatever virtue there may be in stoicism, it is unknown to the true child of God. “I do not care” may be an appropriate expression for an atheist to use, but it is not suitable for a Christian: it may sound well, and the man who utters the defiant word may think himself some great one, but it is an evil utterance for all that. I am afraid some brethren’s “do not care” is very sinful, for they get into debt, and do not care; they break their promises and engagements, and do not care. Brethren, such men ought to care. Every man is bound to care about his life duties, and the claims of his family. He who does not care for his own household is worse than a heathen man. Casting care on God is the very opposite of reckless and inconsiderateness.

11. It is not casting care on God when a man does what is wrong in order to clear himself; yet this is too often tried. Under pressure, some men do very unjustifiable things. We ought to be slow to condemn, since we ourselves also may yet be tempted in the same way, and may err in the same way; still, faith ought to be able to win every battle. He who compromises truth to avoid monetary loss is hewing out a broken cistern for himself. He who borrows when he knows he cannot pay, he who enters into wild speculations to increase his income, he who does anything that is ungodly in order to turn a penny is not casting his care on God. An act of disobedience is a rejection of God’s help, so that we may help ourselves. He who does the right thing at all costs practically casts his care on the Lord. Acts are with us, but their consequences are with God: our care should be to please God, and all other care we may safely leave with him.

12. How, then, are we to cast all our care on God? Two things need to be done. It is a heavy load that is to be cast on God, and it requires the hand of prayer and the hand of faith to make the transfer. Prayer tells God what the care is, and asks God to help, while faith believes that God can and will do it. Prayer spreads the letter of trouble and grief before the Lord, and speaks all its own mind, and then faith cries, “I believe that God cares, and cares for me; I believe that he will bring me out of my distress, and make it promote his own glory.”

13. So when you have lifted your care into its true position, and cast it on God, take heed that you do not pick it up again. Many a time I have gone to God, and have relieved my care by believing prayer; but I am ashamed to confess that, after a little time, I have found myself burdened again with those very anxieties which I thought I had given up. Is it wise to put our feet into fetters which have once been broken off? My brethren, there is a more excellent way, a way which I have tried and proved. I have at times been perplexed with difficulties; I have tried my best with them, and I have utterly failed, and then I have gone with the perplexity to the throne of God, and placed the whole case in the Lord’s hands, solemnly resolving never to trouble myself about these matters any more, whatever might happen. I was quite incapable of further action in the matter, and so I washed my hands of the whole concern, and left it with God. Some of these cares I have never seen again, they melted like hoar-frost in the morning sun, and in their place I have found a blessing lying on the ground. Other troubles have remained in fact but not in effect, for I have consented to the yoke, and it has never galled my shoulder again. Brethren, let the dead bury their dead, and let us follow Jesus. From now on let us leave worldlings to fret and fume over the cares of this life; as for us, let our citizenship be in heaven, and let us carefully abstain from carelessness, being anxious only to end anxiety by a childlike confidence in God.

14. II. Accept this little contribution towards an exposition, and let us now proceed to ENFORCE THE TEXT. I will give you certain reasons, and then the reason why you should cast all your care on God.

15. First, the ever-blessed One commands you to do it. We need no other reason. The precept is akin to the gospel command, “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.” It is a blessed privilege, and it is also a command. He who tells us to cease from idolatry, also tells us to cease from care. The law of Sabbath-keeping is not more divine than that of resting in the Lord. He whom we call Master and Lord tells us to take no anxious thought; his bidding has all the authority of law. Say to yourself, my anxious brother, “I may roll my burden on the Lord, for he tells me to do so.” If you do not trust in God, you will be distinctly sinful; you are as much commanded to trust as to love.

16. Next, cast all your cares on God, because you will have matters enough to think of even then. There are sacred cares which the Lord will lay on you, because you have cast your care on him. When he has broken your painful yoke, you will have his easy yoke to bear. There is the care to love and serve him better; the care to understand his Word; the care to preach it to his people; the care to experience his fellowship; the care to walk so that you shall not vex the Holy Spirit. Such hallowed cares will always be with you, and will increase as you grow in grace. In a sense, we may cast even these on God, looking for his Holy Spirit to help us, for it is he who works in us to will and to do his own good pleasure; yet not without our care and zeal does he operate on us, and this is one reason why you are not to allow lower purposes and plans to inundate your mind. Your spirit has another vineyard to keep, another capital to loan out at interest, another Master to please, and it cannot afford to yield its thought to baser pursuits. Ministers are shepherds, and must care for the sheep. “The hireling flees, because he is a hireling, and does not care for the sheep”; but you have the care of churches laid on you daily, and it is particularly necessary that you should not be occupied with carnal care.

17. And, next, you must cast your care on God, because you have God’s business to do. It is a dangerous thing for a merchant to employ a man who has a business of his own, because, sooner or later, the master’s business will suffer, or else the man’s own concern will die out. “No man who wars,” says Paul, “entangles himself with the affairs of this life; so that he may please him who has chosen him to be a soldier.” There is sure to be a clashing of interests when a brother goes into business, unless he does it as Paul did, so that he may not be chargeable to the church; for then, he attains to double honour. Paul carried his needle and thread with him wherever he went, for everyone had a tent in those days, and he was ready for work at any moment either on small family tents, or tents to cover a great assembly. When he had finished preaching, he could turn to tent mending, and so earn his own living, and preach the gospel freely. Paul did not make his preaching a stalking-horse {c} to his trade, but he made his handicraft a pack-horse to his ministry, so that he could say, “These hands have ministered to my needs, and to those who were with me.” That is a very different thing from a minister deserting his charge to make a larger income by some other calling. The less we have to do with other business the better, for all our care is needed by the church.

18. Queen Elizabeth I told a notable merchant in the City of London to go to the Continent on royal business. “Please your Majesty,” he said, “who will attend to my business while I am away?” The queen replied, “If you will go abroad, and see to my business, I will see to your business.” I will be bound to say that it would not suffer if such a queen took it in hand. Just so the Lord says to us, “You attend to my work, and I will take care of you and your wife and children.” The Lord pledges himself to do it; food shall be given us, our water shall be sure. The testimony of many among you will bear me out in this. I come from a line of preachers, and though some of them have had to endure constrained circumstances, yet none of them were forsaken, nor have their seed been seen begging for food. The Lord has cared for us, and we have lacked nothing.

19. You ought to do it not only for this reason, but because it is such a great privilege to be able to cast your care on God. If I am plunged into a lawsuit, and some eminent law officer would offer to undertake it all, out of love for me, how glad I should be! I should worry no longer, I should say to all who troubled me on the matter, “You must go to my solicitor; I know nothing about the matter.” Do this to your cunning enemy, the devil, who is always glad to see you anxious and fretful. Let us say to him, “The Lord rebuke you, oh Satan; even the Lord who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you.” What a file that is for the old viper to break his teeth on! Chosen! CHOSEN! And if chosen, shall we not be cared for?

20. Let me add, that you ministers ought to cast all your care on God, because it will be such a good example for your hearers. Our people learn much from our conduct; and if they see us fretting, they will be certain to do the same. You preach faith, do you not? How sad it will be for you to be convicted of unbelief! Our own words may condemn us if we are anxious. Once when I was unduly depressed, my good wife said to me, “I have a book here which I should like to read to you.” It did me good to hear her read, but I felt myself rebuked by every word. I half suspected what was coming when she said, “That is your own, remember.” She had been giving the doctor some of his own medicine. How many things you have said, my brethren, that will condemn you if you do not trust God! Is it, after all, mere talk? Did you mean what you said, and is it true? Or have you merely been repeating official dogmas in which you have no personal confidence? Is the providence of God a myth, or a living, bright reality? “Here,” said a quack in the market-place, “is a medicine that will cure coughs, colds, consumptions [the fellow coughed horribly at this point]. It is of such efficacy that it would almost restore the dead. [Here he coughed again.] No one need remain a sufferer, — he has only to buy a box of the pills” — [here the quack’s own cough prevented him from speaking]; ah! laugh on, laugh on, brethren, only take care that no one laughs at you for doubting while you extol faith. We must show in ourselves that faith in our God is a healing medicine, or men will not believe us; we shall make Christ himself seem to be a pretender, unless we practically prove that we have been healed by him. Let your people see in you what comes from trusting Christ; let them see what cheerfulness, what hopefulness, what buoyancy of heart, come to those who trust Christ, and cast all their care on him.

21. But the reason of reasons is that contained in our text, “He cares for you.” After all, what a small matter it must be to God to care for us, since he provides for the commissariat {d} of the universe; the feeding of the cattle on a thousand hills, and the wild beasts of the plains. Think of those myriads of fish, those armies of birds, those enormous multitudes of insects! What a God must he be who cares for everything! Compared with the demands of all these, our little needs are soon supplied. We need very little, and that little is scarcely a crumb from the table of the Lord our God. Surely if God says, “I will care for you,” we need not give another thought except to sing, “The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not lack.” It does not need two of us for this small matter, and certainly not two when one is infinite in wisdom and power. Even if we were wise, the Lord would not need our help. With whom did he take counsel, and who instructed him, when he built the earth, and piled the mountains, and spanned the sky? Let us, therefore, stand still, and see the salvation of God. The Lord thinks about us, plans for us, arranges for us, studies to make things right for us, — these are poor words with which to describe his care, for he does more than that, he loves us. That great, boundless, mighty heart loves us. This is a fit matter for a heavenly song! Because he has set his love on us, we can surely cast our care on him. He has given us Christ, will he not give us food? See, he has called us to be his sons, will he starve his children? See what he is preparing for us in heaven, will he not enable us to bear the burdens of this present life? We dishonour God when we suspect his tenderness and generosities. We can only magnify him by a calm faith which leans on his Word.

22. There, dear brothers, there is my word from the Master for you. I should like to have hammered out that little grain of gold so that you might have gilded your lives with it; but, please do it for yourselves. Now will you carry your cares away, or will you bow your heads in silent prayer, and throw them all off? Holy Spirit, the Comforter, lighten our darkness, we beseech you!


{a} Long Depression: The Long Depression was a worldwide price and economic recession, beginning in 1873 and running either through the spring of 1879, or 1896, depending on the metrics used. It was the most severe in Europe and the United States. See Explorer "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Depression"
{b} Shirt of Nessus: Fearing that Hercules had taken a lover, his wife Deianeira gives him the “shirt” (actually a chiton), which was stained with the blood of the centaur Nessus. She had been tricked by the dying Nessus into believing it would serve as a potion to ensure her husband’s faithfulness. In fact, it contained the venom of the Lernaean Hydra with which Hercules had poisoned the arrow he used to kill Nessus. When Hercules puts it on, the Hydra’s venom begins to cook him alive, and to escape this unbearable pain he builds a funeral pyre and throws himself on it. See Explorer "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shirt_of_Nessus"
{c} Stocking-Horse: An underhanded means or expedient for making an attack or attaining some sinister object; usually, a pretext put forward for this purpose. OED.
{d} Commissariat: Any non-military department or organization for the supply of provisions. OED.

Exposition By C. H. Spurgeon {2Ti 1:1-2:13}

1, 2. Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, to Timothy, my dearly beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

I would again remind you, as I have often done before, that the apostle Paul, when he is writing to a minister, invariably begins his epistle with the triple greeting, “Grace, mercy, and peace,” but when he is writing to a church, he begins with the double blessing, “Grace and peace.” You will find that this is his wish for the Romans, Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Thessalonians, “Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.” This is also his form of greeting to Philemon, who was a private Christian, not a minister; but when the apostle is writing to Timothy and Titus, his own sons in the faith, and his fellow ministers of the gospel, he says, “Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.” It seems as though, guided by the Holy Spirit, he thought that the office of the Christian ministry is of so weighty and responsible a character that the man who properly fills that honourable position not only needs the grace and peace that are necessary for all believers, but that he must in addition have a special supply of mercy; and, truly, no one needs mercy more than the preacher of mercy.

Note, too, that the “grace, mercy, and peace” are to come “from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.” Father and Son are united in the gracious act of bestowing “grace, mercy, and peace.” The Father is the great eternal fountain of all these blessings, but the Son is the divinely-appointed channel through whom they flow down to us.

3. I thank God whom I serve from my forefathers with a pure conscience, that without ceasing I have remembered you in my prayers night and day;

Thank God that Paul had such a sympathetic spirit, and that Timothy’s needs so continually rose before his supplicating eye, and that Paul was able to pray for Timothy, not with anxiety, not in doubtfulness, but with thankfulness. Oh, that all young Christians might be such consistent Christians that those who have brought them to Christ might always be able to pray for them with thankfulness!

4. Greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy;

I suppose that Timothy was very tender-hearted, and that he had been grieved because of Paul’s many afflictions; and, on his part, the apostle greatly missed his dearly beloved son in the faith. In the latter part of this Epistle, Paul writes, “Do your diligence to come shortly to me: for Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world”; and again, “Do your diligence to come before winter.” Anticipating his impending martyrdom, Paul longed for the companionship of the one who was so especially dear to him.

5. When I remember the sincere faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois, and your mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in you also.

Grace does not run in the blood, but it often runs side by side with it. The “grandmother Lois” and the “mother Eunice” had the true grace of saving faith dwelling in them, and Paul was persuaded that it dwelt in the son and grandson Timothy.

6. Therefore I remind you — 

Paul had been speaking of his own memory of Timothy, and of Timothy’s faith, and now he says, “Therefore I remind you” — 

6. To stir up the gift of God, which is in you by the putting on of my hands. {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1080, “Our Gifts, and How to Use Them” 1071}

The best of fires need stirring sometimes; and the best gift of God, even the sacred fire of the Holy Spirit, may sometimes burn low in the heart; so that we have need to stir up the gift of God that is within us. There are some brethren, also, who have more God-given gifts within them than they know about. They have never searched for them, so they allow them to lie hidden away unobserved and useless. We need to stir up our gifts well as our graces, and to use for God’s glory all the powers with which he has entrusted us.

7. For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

What a blessing this is to all who can truly say, with Paul, “God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind!”

8. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, — 

There is need to say this today, for many are becoming “ashamed of the testimony of our Lord,” that old-fashioned gospel which Paul received by direct revelation from his Lord, and for which he laid down his life. It is fashionable now-a-days to put on the furbelows {e} of modern philosophy rather than to be robed in the snow-white garment of truth. Paul says to Timothy, “Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord,” — 

8, 9. Nor of me his prisoner: but be a partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; who has saved us, and called us with a holy calling.

Salvation comes first, and calling afterwards; at least, so it is in the great plan of redemption. We are saved by the death of Christ before we are effectually called by his grace. The great work of our salvation was accomplished for us on Calvary, and now we are made to know and to partake of that salvation by the effectual calling of the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the gospel.

9. Not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before the world began —  {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 703, “Salvation Altogether by Grace” 694}

What a blessed doctrine this is! Some people cannot endure even to hear or read about it, but it is full of comfort and joy for the Spirit-taught people of God. God’s grace was “given to us in Christ Jesus before the world began,” — 

10, 11. But is now revealed by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who has abolished death, and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: to which I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.

How Paul revels in this triple divine appointment! He began this Epistle by writing, “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God”; and here he says of the gospel, “to which I am appointed a preacher.” I see that some tradesmen put up a notice over their shops stating that they are such and such “by appointment to Her Majesty,” but Paul had the highest honour under heaven in being “appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.”

12. For which reason I also suffer these things:

And I expect that his eyes glanced around on the walls of his dungeon, and that he rattled the chains that bound his hands to those of the soldiers who had him in their charge.

12-15. Nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep what I have committed to him against that day. Hold firm the form of sound words, which you have heard from me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. That good thing which was committed to you keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us. This you know, that all those who are in Asia are turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.

Probably these were leaders who ought to have acted differently, and to have stuck by the apostle; but when he was in prison, and likely to be put to death by Nero, many, who had been his former companions, forsook him, and were ashamed to acknowledge him, — for which we also are ashamed of them. It is the same now, if the servant of God shall fall into the disfavour of the great ones of the earth, many will be ashamed of him.

Paul mentions these who turned away from him, for their unfaithfulness evidently grieved him severely; but he also mentions another case of quite a different kind: — 

16, 17. May the Lord give mercy to the house of Onesiphorus; for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chains: but, when he was in Rome, he sought me out very diligently, and found me.

He did not know exactly where the apostle was, — in which prison he was confined; but he went from place to place until at last he found him, and then he was not ashamed to be seen ministering to the poor chained prisoner. We read of various city corporations spending a great deal of money in buying chains of office for their mayors; but this chain, worn by the apostle in his prison cell at Rome, was far more valuable than any of them. What an eternal honour it will be to him, and how sad it is that anyone should have been ashamed of his fetters when he was so bravely suffering for Christ’s sake! There was more value in those chains on Paul’s wrists than in all the chains that were ever worn on the necks of the great ones of this world.

18. May the Lord grant to him, that he may find mercy from the Lord in that day:

He came to Paul, and talked with him, and probably sang with him, and prayed with him, I have no doubt. He often refreshed the apostle in Rome; and then Paul added: — 

18. And in how many things he ministered to me at Ephesus, you know very well.

This happy Onesiphorus, was a true servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, who loved to minister to the apostle when he was in suffering and sorrow.

2:1, 2. You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, the same commit to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

This is the true apostolic succession, — one minister brings another to Christ, and then charges that other to train other preachers and teachers to carry on the blessed work of evangelization.

3, 4. You therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man who wars entangles himself with the affairs of this life; so that he may please him who has chosen him to be a soldier.

The man who has given himself entirely to the service of Christ must not undertake any other business that would prevent his giving his whole strength to his Master’s work.

5-8. And if a man also strives for masteries, yet he is not crowned, unless he strives lawfully. The farmer who labours must be the first partaker of the fruits. Consider what I say; and may the Lord give you understanding in all things. Remember that Jesus Christ of the seed of David was raised from the dead according to my gospel: {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1653, “The Resurrection of our Lord Jesus” 1654}

The resurrection of Christ is the corner-stone of the glorious temple of truth, the keystone of the arch of revelation. Paul tells us, in that great chapter, 1 Corinthians 15, how hopeless our case would be if Christ was not “raised from the dead”; but he also proves most conclusively that he was raised “the third day, according to the Scriptures.”

9. For which I suffer trouble, as an evildoer, even to bonds; but the word of God is not bound. {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1998, “Not Bound Yet” 1999}

Thank God that it is not yet bound though many have tried to fetter it. When they think that they have manacled it, it breaks loose again, and so it always will. However low this heavenly fire may burn, it soon blazes up again; and so it shall to the world’s end. Immortal as the Christ who is the sum and substance of it is the everlasting gospel of the blessed God.

10-13. Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, so that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. It is a faithful saying: For if we are dead with him, we shall also live with him: if we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us: if we do not believe, yet he remains faithful: he cannot deny himself. —  {See Spurgeon_Sermons No. 1453, “Eternal Faithfulness Unaffected by Human Unbelief” 1446}

Blessed truth, may God grant us the grace to mediate on it until we also shall become faithful to him and to his truth!


{e} Furbelow: A piece of stuff pleated and puckered on a gown or petticoat; a flounce; the pleated border of a petticoat or gown. Now often in plural as a contemptuous term for showy ornaments or trimming, esp. in a lady’s dress. OED.

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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