A Sermon Delivered On Sunday Morning, July 28, 1861, By Pastor C. H. Spurgeon, At The Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.
Joint heirs with Christ. (Ro 8:17)
1. The apostle has proceeded through a simple but exceedingly forcible train of reasoning until he gains this glorious point—“Joint heirs with Christ.” He begins thus—“You have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you have received the spirit of adoption, by which we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’” This is a fact which he takes for granted because he has perceived it in the hearts of believers. We do cry, “Abba, Father.” From this he infers that if God has given us the Spirit by which we call him “Father,” then we are his children, which is plain, fair, and clear reasoning. Then he adds—“If children then heirs”—though this does not hold true in all families, because all children are not heirs, frequently the firstborn may take all the estate; but with God as long as they are children they have equal rights. “If children then heirs.” He goes on to say, “Heirs of God;” for if they are heirs they inherit their Father’s property. God is their Father, they are therefore God’s heirs! Well, but God has another Son, one who is the firstborn of every creature. Exactly so, therefore if we are heirs, just as Christ Jesus is the heir of all things, so we are “joint heirs with Christ.” I think you will see that, like links in a chain, these different truths draw each other on—the spirit of adoption proves the fact of adoption; by the act of adoption we are children; if children then heirs; if heirs, heirs of God; but since there is another heir, we must therefore be joint heirs with Christ Jesus. Blessed is the man to whom this reasoning is not abstract, but experiential. Happy is he who can follow the apostle step by step, and say, “Yes, I have this morning the spirit of a son; I know that my heart loves God, and I look to him as my Father, with trust, with confidence, and with love; then I am surely his son, because I have the Spirit of a son; then I am his heir; I am the heir of God; and thus my faith lays hold upon the thrice precious words of this glorious text—I am a joint heir with Christ.”
2. I wish to invite you, my brethren in Christ Jesus, this morning, to do three things; first, let us consider the terms of the will—“joint heirs with Christ;” secondly, let us go forth and view the estates—what it is of which we are joint heirs; and when we have done so, let us proceed at once to partake, for God has made his children partakers as well as heirs.
3. I. First, then, there is A LEGAL TERM IN THE WILL UPON WHICH THE WHOLE MATTER WILL HINGE. We are called “joint heirs with Christ”—what does this mean?
4. 1. It means, first of all, that our right to the divine heritage stands or falls with Christ’s right to the same inheritance. We are coheirs; if he is truly an heir, so are we; and if he is not, neither are we. Our two interests are intertwined and made one, neither of us has any heirship apart from the other; we are joint heirs, Christ jointly with us; ourselves jointly with Christ. So, then, it follows that if there is any flaw in the will, so that it is not valid, if it is not correctly signed, sealed, and delivered, then it is no more valid for Christ than it is for us. If there are some points in the covenant of grace where wisdom has been deficient, and therefore by error it may miscarry, or by lack of legal right may prove null and void, it is as surely null towards Christ as towards ourselves, for he is jointly concerned in it. If according to law we are only presumptive heirs, whose rights may be superseded, then our great joint heir, as far as he is coheir with us, is superseded also. If it is possible that by some decree in heaven’s high court, it should be certified and determined that the inheritance is not rightly ours, because some one part of the covenant was left in a precarious state so that it became void and of no effect, then, your inheritance, oh you King of kings, has failed you in the very day when it has failed us. I trust you will lay hold upon that thought; if Christ as God’s heir has a perfect right to what his Father has bestowed upon him, even so have we, for our rights are co-existent. If our title is true and just, so is his, and if his rights of heritage are true and just, so are ours. Oh! blessed thought for the believer! Jesus must lose the reward of his agonies before we can lose the fruits of them. Jesus the Mediator must lose the glory which his finished work has procured for him, before one of his coheirs can lose it too; he must come down from that glory which he now inhabits, and cease to be honoured as “the Lamb that was slain, and has redeemed us to God by his blood,” if any one of his people shall be deprived of that glory, and are cast into hell. The will, if valid for one, is valid for all.
5. But perhaps there may be a suit in law made against the will; some antagonist may set up a counter claim; an enemy to the entire family may proceed at once to attack the will with venom and with malice; he may take it into the Heavenly Court of Chancery, and there, before the great Judge, the question may be tried as to whether the inheritance be legally and lawfully ours. Very well, so be it; but then it is Christ’s interest that is at stake as well as mine; he will be co-respondent in the suit. When Satan came forward to accuse Joshua, the high priest, he did in effect accuse Christ as well as that chosen disciple, and the Lord was not slow to put in his rejoinder to the objection: “The Lord rebukes you, oh Satan, even the Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebukes you: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?” If Satan brings an accusation before God against any of the Lord’s redeemed, that accusation is made against the Redeemer himself, for God’s people are so one with Christ, that you must first bring the charge against Christ himself before you dare to lay it against any of his elect. Do not say you can charge the members with sin; you may do so in the inferior courts of earth, but the bill will be ignored in the supreme court of heaven, since before that judgment bar the accepted substitute appears to answer all demands. You must enter your suit against the Head if you wish to attack the members, for truly the action at law which can be pleaded against the member of the body must be pleaded against the Head itself, for no court can allow a distinction between the body and the head in an action at law. If it is possible that the malice and the craft of hell could invent some scheme by which the covenant could he thrown out of court, and the promise of grace could be made to fail, then Christ fails with his people, and the heir of all things loses his inheritance as soon as one single one of the other heirs shall have his right to the inheritance disproved. Our rights are joint rights, and must be either jointly acknowledged or jointly denied. “We are joint heirs with Christ.”
6. Yet, further, to illustrate the full meaning of the joint heirship—suppose, after the will had been proven and acknowledged to be valid, it shall be found in winding up the affairs of the testator, that nothing is left to distribute—suppose, after all this boast and talk about being heirs, the property should be nil, or there should even be found a debt against the estate—what then? Why, my brethren, if we get nothing, Christ gets nothing; if there should be no heaven for us, there is no heaven for Christ. If there should be no thrones for us, there would be no throne for him; if the promise should utterly fail in its fulfilment to the least of the joint inheritors, it must also fail to be accomplished for our Lord Jesus Christ himself. Whether the property is much or little, we are coheirs; if there are infinite treasures, Christ has them, and we have them; but if there is no treasure whatever, and faith should end in disappointment, and hope in despair, the calamity which impoverishes us must also impoverish our great coheir. When we are poor, and in eternity have no shelter; when we in the next world shall find no heaven and no bliss,—then, wandering as outcast orphans, we shall see our Older Brother an outcast orphan too; if we be portionless and penniless, the Firstborn among many brethren must be portionless and penniless also, for with him we stand or we fall.
7. And then suppose that, in winding up the estates, it should be found that, though there is something left, yet it is a mere trifle, scarcely worth an acknowledgment: enough to excite the appetite but not sufficient to satisfy it—what if it should come out at last, that heaven is not the infinite joy we have been taught to expect; suppose its bliss should be only inferior joy, such as might be found even in this world below—suppose that the harps have no melody, the crowns very little glory, and heaven’s streets but slight magnificence—what then? What they are to us they are to our coheir. Saints with little glory, then Christ with little glory; believers with a narrow heaven, then Christ with a narrow heaven. If they drink very little from the river of pleasure, his draughts must be shallow too, for their joy is his joy, and he has given his glory to them. He shall see the travail of his soul and shall be satisfied, and you who long for his appearing shall be satisfied also when you awaken in his likeness.
8. I have been dwelling upon the black side in order to bring the bright one out by contrast. We are joint heirs. So you see if there is any flaw, if there is any action to set aside the will, or if there is found no inheritance, or if the inheritance is small, the loss falls upon the coheirs; not on one alone, nor on the other alone, but on the two, since they are jointly designated heirs in the will, and they are only heirs as they stand in relationship with one another. But oh! my brethren, let us revel with delight for a moment in the contrast which I might present to you. There is no flaw in God’s will with regard to Christ. The heathen may rage, and the kings of the earth take counsel together, but God says, “I will declare the decree, yet I have set my Son upon any holy hill of Zion.” There is no fear whatever that, by any accident or by mistake, Christ should miss the honour to which his Father has ordained him; he must be with his Father where he is. There is just as little fear for you and for me if we be heirs of God. Thus runs the decree, and thus shall the fulfilment follow—“I will that they whom you have given me be with me where I am.” No suit in law can stand against Christ; it would be idle to dream it for a moment. He has satisfied God’s law, magnified it and made it honourable; he has discharged all the debts which as surety he took upon himself. Who shall accuse the Redeemer? Who shall lay anything to the charge of him who rose again from the dead? Nor can any creature accuse his saints, nor can heaven, or earth, or hell disprove our rights or infringe upon our title as long as his title stands undisputed and indisputable. We shall see his face; the demons in hell cannot hinder it; we shall possess the promised rest, all the fiends that are beneath shall not rob us of our rights as an heir. And, believer, there is no fear that Christ shall be the possessor of nothing or heir of little things. He is the Son of God the infinitely rich, and God will not give to his Son a petty dowry or a trifling portion. “Ask of me,” he says, and he gives him unlimited permission to ask, not as Herod who would give only the half of his kingdom, but as one who would give everything to his Son whom he has appointed heir of all things, and by whom he make the worlds. And oh my soul, your portion cannot be paultry nor your dowry meagre, since it is the same inheritance which Christ has from his Father’s hands. Weigh the riches of Christ in scales and his treasures in balances, and then think to count the treasures which belong to the saints. Reach the bottom of Christ’s sea of joy, and then hope to understand the bliss which God has prepared for them who love him. Surpass the boundaries of Christ’s possession if you can, and then dream of finding a limit to the possessions of the elect of God. “All things are yours, for you are Christ’s and Christ is God’s.”
9. 2. There is another point under the first main point which I must not omit. Then it appears if we are called joint heirs with Christ, we legally and strictly have no inheritance apart from him. Soul, this suggests to you a solemn enquiry, “Are you in Christ or not?” Do not think that you can ever be a partaker of the fulness of God unless you are in Christ—with him vitally and personally, one. One of two joint heirs has no right apart from the other. The signature of the one will not avail to alienate the estate, nor can he sell it by his own right, nor have it all at his own separate disposal, or in his own sole possession or holding. He has, in fact, no right at all, except as he is taken in connection with his coheir. Consider this, believer. You have no right to heaven in yourself; your right lies in Christ. If you are pardoned, it is through his blood; if you are justified, it is through his righteousness; if you are sanctified, it is because he is made sanctification by God to you; if you are taught in the ways of God, it is because he becomes your wisdom; if you shall be kept from falling it will be because you are preserved in Christ Jesus; and if you are perfected, it is because you are complete in him, and if you are glorified at the last, it will be because God the Father has glorified his Son Jesus. The promises are yea and amen to you, but only in Christ Jesus, in whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who works at things after the counsel of his own will. Make yourself assured, then, that you are in union with Christ, for out of him you have no rights whatever.
10. 3. The title of joint heir contains another mystery which I cannot withhold, although it must be judiciously handled—Christ, as coheir, has (of his own free grace) so identified himself with us, that his rights as coheir are not to be separated or viewed apart from ours. As God, by his own right, the Lord Jesus is possessor of all things, since he made and supports all things; but as Jesus, the mediator, the federal head of the covenant of grace, he has no rights apart from his people. See, brethren, he enters into glory, but not for himself alone, for it is written, “Where the forerunner is for us entered.” (Heb 6:20) Does he stand in the presence of God—he appears in the presence of God for us. (Heb 9:24) Adam’s death was not simply his own private loss, for in Adam all died, and Christ’s life and all the consequences of his obedience are not merely his own, but the joint riches of all who are in him, of whom he is the federal head, and on whose behalf he accomplished the divine will. When Christ gave himself for us, he gave us all the rights and privileges which went with himself, so that now he has, as our Brother, no inheritance apart from us, although, as Eternal God, he has essential rights to which no creature may venture to pretend.
11. Yet I shall make one more remark before we leave this point. While dwelling upon this joint heirship, let us notice what an honour is conferred upon us. To have anything to do with a great man is thought by some people to be a distinguished mark of honour; to be set down in a will as coheir with some great prince or noble would be considered indeed a great thing; but what honour is conferred on you, believer, to be joint heir with the King of kings, the Wonderful, the Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace! You came here today from your toil, and your bones have scarcely forgotten yesterday’s weariness; but you are coheir with him who rules all heaven; you are come here in poverty and you will go home to a scant meal in a small room, but you are coheir with him who made the worlds, by whom: all things consist; you have come here weak and feeble, doubting, distrustful, and cast down, but I tell you, weak though you are, and in your own judgment less than the least of all saints, yet the same hand that wrote Christ heir of all things wrote your name with his; and until a hand can be found that can blot out your Redeemer’s name yours shall stand and abide for ever and ever. Come, lift up your head; envy no man his dukedom; think no man’s princeship worth your coveting; you are greater than the greatest, for you are joint heir with Christ; in dignified relationship you have no superior upon earth; and except those who are joint heirs with you, you have no equal, since you are joint heir with Christ. And will you think, yet again, what cause there is that you should realise today your union with Christ, since you are a joint heir with him. Soul, you are linked with Christ in the Eternal business of the Eternal Father. When he decreed Christ to be blessed above all the blessed, he decreed you to be a partaker with him. Christ was always considered as having you in him, and you were always considered by God as being in Christ. I urge you to consider yourself as being in Christ. Look today upon your own being, not as a stray spark, but as a portion of Christ’s fire, not as a solitary drop, but as a part of that deep sea of love which we call Christ Jesus. Think of yourself now, not as a man or separate individual, but as a member of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. These are blessed subjects, though I cannot speak upon them as I wish. I always find when I have to deal with these “fat things full of marrow,” that words fail us; and perhaps it is well, for then the excellency of the power is proven to be not by words of man but in the weight, and fulness, and richness of gospel matter. Joint heirs with Christ Jesus! I defy you to exhaust that topic, though you should think about it all the days of the next week, indeed, though you should muse upon it until eternity commences with your soul.
12. II. IN VIEWING THE ESTATES we must remark that to our present apprehension they are divided into two parts, the first part of the inheritance is one which flesh and blood would fain do without—it is the inheritance of suffering. When Christ was God’s heir, and was here on earth, he was heir of the cross, heir of shame, and spitting, and cruel mockings, and scourgings. If we are joint heirs with him, we, too, must partake of the same. Come with me, believer, to your estates, and behold, just on the edge of your Father’s great inheritance, lies the swamp and morass of affliction. Now this is yours. If this be not yours, neither are the rest, for they are in the same indenture, and they are bequeathed to you in the same will. The same legacy that left peace with you, also left tribulation with you, while you are in this world. Come now, though this is an exceedingly troublesome place, though it is a piece of ground which you would fain leave out and give to your enemies, yet there is a possibility of getting great treasure and great riches out of it; therefore do not scorn it. But if you scorn it, remember, you scorn the rest of the inheritance, for they are all one and indivisible in your Father’s will. Christ’s cross is entailed on all heirs of God. Will you take the cross? What! do your shoulders forbid, and refuse themselves the pain of bearing it? Then, remember, your head must deny itself the pleasure of wearing the crown. No cross no crown. If you are joint heir and would claim one part of the estate, you must take the rest. Are you ready to abandon your own claim, and say, “I will not be heir of anything?” So be it, then; but until you are, you must be ready to suffer in this world the afflictions of the chosen sons, for they are a part of the inheritance. But, remember, Christ is coheir with you in this. “In all their afflictions he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them.” Added to this you must also be the heir of persecution. Christ had to be persecuted and so must you. If you, for fear of shame, and out of the love of the flesh, will not follow Christ through an evil generation, neither shall you follow him when he marches through the streets of heaven in triumph, amidst the acclamations of angels. You must endure persecution; but then, remember, he will be joint heir with you. “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” “He had not persecuted Christ,” you say, “it was only some poor men and women whom he had dragged off to prison, or scourged in the synagogue, to compel them to blaspheme.” Indeed, but Christ was coheir with them, and when Saul persecuted the poor servants of Jesus, he persecuted the Master too. Will you be sharers with him? Will you be scoffed at for his sake? Will you be willing to endure the revilings of slanderous tongues?—for if not, inasmuch as you reject one part of the inheritance you reject the rest. There is a third black portion, too, namely, temptation. You must be tempted by Satan; you must be tried by the world, the flesh, and the devil. Do you shrink from it? Do you say, “I do not wish to be a Christian, if I must always be on my guard, and always fighting against temptation from without and from within?” Remember, in this, too, Christ is your coheir. “He was tempted in all points like as we are.” “We have not a High Priest who cannot be touched with a feeling of our infirmities.” Do you shrink from being tempted? Would you take Job’s jewels, but not his dunghill? Would you have David’s crown, but not his caves of Adullam, and rocks of the wild goats? Would you have your Master’s throne, but not his temptation in the wilderness? Then, remember, it cannot be; when you refuse the one, you relinquish all claim to the other. The coheir is heir to the entire estate; and if he says, “No, not to that portion,” then he is not heir to any; and if he makes exemption anywhere, he makes exemption all of it. The joint heirship reaches from the gloomy paths of deep affliction up to the bright ineffable splendour of the throne of bliss, nor can any man reverse the record. “If so be that we suffer with him, we shall also be glorified together.”
13. Now, let us march with joyful footsteps onward to the other part of the inheritance. As this is a legal question, and as in matters of wills everything should be proven and sworn to, let us have, concerning our inheritance, the evidence of God: that cannot lie. Now, first, brethren, as coheirs with Christ, we are heirs of God—so the text tells us. Oh! who can tell what God is? The finite cannot grasp the infinite. We who are only babes cannot hold the great ocean of Godhead in our infantile palms. We do not know what God is, nor the measure of his attributes. But, remember, the text tells us that all God is, is ours. Is he omnipotent? Your omnipotence is ours, oh God, to be our defence. Is he omniscient? Your infinite wisdom, oh God, is mine to guide me. Is he eternal? Your eternity, oh God, is mine to keep me in existence, so that I may always be preserved. Is he full of love and grace? Then all your love, as though there were not another to be loved, is mine, oh God, and all your grace, as though there were never another sinner to partake of it, is mine. “The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup.” (Ps 16:5) “God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.” (Ps 73:26) Look at another passage. Turn to Romans and you will find that there the promise that was made to the seed was that he should be heir of the world. “Ask of me,” said his father, “and I will give you the heathen for your inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for your possession.” (Ro 4:13 “This world is ours,” says the apostle in another place, and ours because it is Christ’s by right of inheritance. There is nothing here below which does not belong to a believer. If he has wealth, let him use it in his Master’s service, for it is his. If he has poverty, it is better for him; for poverty is his to help him, to be sanctified, and to long for heaven. Whatever happens to him—sickness or health, adversity or prosperity, everything is his here below. You may walk the broad acres of this round globe, and never look upon a single place that is not yours. You may cast your eye to the remotest star, or send your thoughts beyond into the untraversed leagues of space, but look where you will, just as all is Christ’s, so all is yours. You have not come of age, so you do not possess it yet; but the day shall come when Christ shall come to this earth, and take possession of it, and then his saints shall reign with him. “The meek shall inherit the earth, and delight themselves with the abundance of peace.” In Heb 1:2, we are told that God has appointed Christ heir of all things. Then we are heirs of all things—heaven and earth, time and eternity, anything that you can conceive of, the things that can be named and cannot be named, things conceivable and inconceivable, finite and infinite, human and divine. Christ’s property extends to all, and we are coheirs. Therefore, our rights and our property extend to all things whatever they may be. “For 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.” Then in Jas 2:5, we are spoken of as being heirs of the kingdom. Christ has a kingdom that shall never be moved. He rules over all. Does he call himself a King? He has made us kings. Is Christ a priest? We are priests to our God. Does he sit upon a throne? We shall overcome and sit down with him upon his throne. Will he judge the nations? Do you not know that the saints shall judge the world! Will he be received with triumph by his Father? So shall we when his Father shall say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Will he be ruler over many things? So shall we be when he shall say to us, “Enter into the joy of your Lord.” Has he joy? We shall have joy too, for we shall have his joy. Is he glorious? So must we be, for we shall be made like him. Is he everlasting? So shall we be, for because he lives, we shall live also. Brethren, I urge you, if your thoughts now can bring themselves to the matter, gather up all the honours, glories, treasures, riches, that your thoughts have ever conceived as belonging to Christ, and while the hymn is ringing in your ear—“Crown him, crown him, crown him, Lord of all;” remember that you are coheirs with him. Oh! it is a glorious truth. Oratory may stand back, and eloquence may hold her tongue. The doctrine must be stated in its naked truth. She is, “when unadorned, adorned the most.” This glorious truth is most sweet when earth’s honeyed words are taken away, and most lustrous when we no longer attempt to illuminate her with human language. We are heirs with Christ. All that he has, all that he is, therefore, belongs to us.
14. III. Now, thirdly, and this is the practical part of the discourse, let us proceed to PARTAKE OF THE INHERITANCE. “How can we do that?” you say. Well, in the first place, there is one part of the property which we may enjoy at once. Behold, I present to you the fair cross of your once crucified Older Brother. When you came here this morning you were troubled, and as you came in you were envying your neighbour. You were saying of such-and-such an ungodly person, “Everything seems to go well with him, but as for me, all the day long I am plagued, and chastened every morning.” You were murmuring at the dispensations of God. Now, you have heard your Father’s will read, and you find that you are joint heirs with Christ. You discover that Christ had his cross, and you are asked to partake of the will. Come, take your cross up and bear it with joy. You will have to carry it. Whether you take it up or not; your murmuring will not lighten your afflictions. You can make your wooden cross into an iron one, if you choose, by being of a fretful disposition. Resignation to God’s will takes the weight out of the cross, but a proud spirit that will not bow to God’s will changes a wooden cross into an iron one. Now which shall it be? You must be chastened, you must feel the goad; will you kick against the pricks and so wound yourself more than you would have been by the goad itself? Why will you inflict more sorrow on yourself than God inflicts? Be patient, and you only feel the rod as it is in God’s hands, but when you are impatient and clutch at the rod, you bring it down with the weight of God’s hand and your own hand too. Now be quiet. Not only be quiet, but be glad. Say, “I count it to be my joy to be permitted to be a partaker of the sufferings of Christ. I will count it to be my highest glory if I may be made a knight of the cross, and may carry that cross upon my shoulder: to the world a badge of dishonour, but to me the ensign of glory, the escutcheon of honour.” I cannot of course picture what your precise trouble is. Some of you have a trouble, perhaps, in her who is dearest to you. Others of you have affliction in your children; many of you are tried in your business, and some of you in your bodies with chronic or acute diseases. I know you all have a cross, or if you do not, I hope you will soon have one, for where there is no cross there is no Christ. The cross and Christ are nailed together by four nails, and they will never be disassociated in the experience of any Christian. All the sheep of the Great Shepherd are marked with the cross, and this not only in the fleece, but in the flesh. “If you are without chastisement of which all are partakers, then are you bastards and not sons.” Now, I say begin at once to partake, by shouldering the cross and bearing your troubles and your persecutions with patience and with joy.
15. But next: why cannot we partake also of the blessed part of the glorious testament? Brethren, faith can do wonders. While sense is grovelling down below, faith with eagle wing cuts through the cloud and mounts to heaven. If you have faith enough brethren, you may this mourning be raised up to sit together in heavenly places with Christ Jesus. Come, faith, and help me now to lay my fingers among the strings of the golden harp. Yes, that harp is mine, and my soul by faith would make every string resound with melody. Glory be to you, oh God, glory be to you; my soul is in heaven; I with the cherubim and seraphim would bow, and sing, and rejoice; I veil my face with them in this most joyful moment wiping every tear from my poor eyes, I bid them look upon your glory in Christ. My soul would even now take her seat upon the throne; where my treasure is, there shall my heart be also.
Even now I will adore him,
With the glorious hosts above,
Who for ever bow before him,
And unceasing sing his love.
I will begin the music here.
And so my soul shall rise;
Oh! for some heavenly note to bear
My passions to the skies.
E’en now by faith I join my hands
With those who went before.
All hail! you blood besprinkled bands,
Upon the eternal shore.
Oh! holy Immanuel, exalted as you are, your coheirs here below begin by faith to partake of your glory. I think my head wears the crown; the white robe is girt about me, and my feet tread no more the battlefields, but the streets of peaceful bliss. Jerusalem, my spirit is come to you, and to your glorious assembly. Oh you firstborn, whose names are written in heaven, I take my seat with you and join your rapturous adoration. Oh God, you Judge of all, my spirit meets you robed in my Saviour’s righteousness, and greets you as my Father and my all. Oh eternity, eternity eternity!—time is gone, and change is over, and I am floating on your peaceful waves, where winds can never howl and tempests never come. My soul has made me like the chariots of Aminadab, and I have gone away to the hills of myrrh and the mountains of frankincense.
16. Last of all, I have another practical point. God has given Christ the heathen for his inheritance, and the uttermost ends of the earth for his possession, and we are coheirs with him. Brethren, let us advance to take the property. But how! Why some of you can do so by preaching the gospel to poor sinners in the streets. Others, this afternoon, by teaching your children in the class. You can say, “God has given these souls to Christ, I am going to take them in Christ’s name.” Others of you who can do little yourselves, can today assist by sending forth men of God to preach the gospel of Christ. Germany does not belong to the cloudy philosopher, but to Christ. Holland, Belgium, Russia, and Poland, do not belong to their kings and czars; Christ is the King of kings; these lands belong to us. Go up; take them. Do not say, “There are giants in the land;” you are strong enough to strike them. Do not say, “Lutheranism and Popery are mighty.” So they are, but he who is with you is mightier by far. As Jonathan of old, with his armour, climbed up the steep place in the cleft of the rock and began to mow down his enemies, so, believer, alone or with your friend, as God has called you, climb up, for truly the possession is yours, and you may take it. All that the Church needs today is courage and devotion. Only let the Church know her rights and claim them; let her cease to assimilate herself to the sons of earth, let her cease from her accursed fornication with the state, and she shall become the pure, chaste bride of Christ. Let her, then, as Christ’s queen, claim the earth as hers, and send her heralds forth from sea to sea to bid all men bow before him, and confess him to be their King. God’s power will be with her heralds; God’s might shall be with her armies, and the earth shall soon submit, and Christ shall reign for ever and ever. “Say to the North, give up, and to the South, do not keep back; bring my sons from afar, and my daughters from the ends of the earth.” Say it, Christians, say it this morning; say it by your prayer, your deeds, your constant energy, say it by your charity, demand the earth for Christ; demand it for yourselves, for you are “joint heirs with Christ.” I urge you to take the possession now.
17. Poor prodigal sinner, may our Father bring you home, for there is an inheritance even for you. “Believe on the Lord Jesus and you shall be saved.”