A Sermon Delivered on Sunday Evening, December 28, 1862, by Pastor C. H. Spurgeon, at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington.
Oh sing to the Lord a new song; for he has done marvelous things: his right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory. (Ps 98:1)
1. There must be new songs on new occasions of triumph. It would have been absurd for Miriam with her timbrel to conduct the music of the daughters of Israel to some old sonnet that they had learned in Egypt. Indeed, an old song could not have expressed the feelings of that generation, much less could it have served to utter a voice, the jubilant notes of which distant posterity should echo. They must have a new song while they sing to each other, “Sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea.” This has never happened before, but henceforth each father must proclaim its fame to his son. In later times, when Deborah and Barak had routed the armies of Sisera, they did not borrow Miriam’s song; but they had a new psalm for the new event. They said, “Awake, awake, Deborah; awake, awake, utter a song: arise, Barak, and lead your captives captive, oh son of Abinoam.” In later years, at the building of the temple, or on the solemn feast days, it was always the custom of the inspired poets of the age to cry, “Oh come, let us sing to the Lord a new song.” Thus the grateful notes of praise have gathered volume and augmented their sound as the ages have rolled onwards; and these were only the preliminary rehearsals for a grand oratorio. What then, shall be the marvellous novelty and the matchless glory of that song which shall be sung at the last upon Mount Zion, when ten thousand times ten thousand of the warriors of God shall surround Jesus the conqueror, when we shall hear a voice from heaven as the voice of many waters, and like great thunders, when shall be heard the voice of harpers, harping with their harps; what shall be, I say, the strange novelty of that new song which they shall sing before the throne, when the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures shall fall before God upon their faces, and worship him for ever and ever? Oh that our ears could anticipate that tremendous burst of “Hallelujah! hallelujah! hallelujah! the Lord God Omnipotent reigns.”
2. I want to carry your minds, if I can, tonight, for a little while to that last and grandest, because the decisive victory, which shall proclaim the name and fame of Jehovah in all his mighty attributes, and in all his majestic deeds, when the battle shall be over for ever, and the banner shall be furled and the sword shall be sheathed, because the last foe shall be destroyed, and placed beneath the feet of the Almighty victor; “His right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.” My text seems, however suitable it may be to other occasions, to be most fitting for that last and most splendid triumph.
3. There are three things in it: transcendent victory; conspicuous Deity; and glorified holiness.
4. I. First in our text we perceive very clearly TRANSCENDENT VICTORY.
5. What shall we say about that victory? Its shouts already greet our ears, and the anthem that celebrates it is already prepared, when all the principalities and powers of this world shall be laid low, the pride of earth shall burst like a bubble, the great globe itself shall dissolve, and the things that are seen shall be folded up like a vesture, worn out, and crumbled with decay, that victory will be transcendent; there shall be none comparable to it; it shall stand matchless and unrivalled in all the wars of God, of angels, or men.
6. Well, we must say of that victory, there shall be no one to dispute the claim of God the Most High. The most splendid victories of one army have frequently been claimed by the opposite partisans. If you stand beneath the triumphal arch in Paris, you will see the names of some battles which you simple minded Englishmen always thought had been won by British soldiers; but you discover that our history was all a mistake, and that the Frenchmen really retreated victorious from the plain. I suppose in America it is always difficult to ascertain who has been the conqueror; and where there are no generals, and the whole affair seems to be who shall kill the most and wade through the most blood, there naturally must be difficulty in ascertaining who has won the day. But in this case there shall be no dispute whatever. The dragon’s head shall be so completely broken, that he can do nothing except bite his iron bands and growl out his confession that God is stronger than he. The hosts of hell shall have been so utterly routed, that the deep groans of dismay and shrieks of terror shall be the confession that Omnipotence rules their terrible doom. As for Death, when he shall see his captives all freed before his eyes; as for the Grave, when the key shall be torn from her grip, and all her treasures plucked from her grasp — Death and the Grave shall both acknowledge that their victory is gone for ever; Christ has been the conqueror, the Son of God who in our nature has already taken away the sting. There may be today some who write their names down as Atheists; there may be others who publicly affirm that they are the adversaries of God; and throughout the universe there are never lacking those who are hopeful that the issue will turn out as they wish — they are hopeful that wrong will conquer right; that evil shall drive out good, and darkness extinguish light. But there shall not be one such being left on that great day of victory; it shall be acknowledged even by the lip of despair that the Lord God, “with his own right hand, and his holy arm, has gained for himself the victory.” Blazoned across the sky in lightnings such as the eye of terror has never beheld before; thundered out with trumpet louder than even what startled the sleeping dead, every tongue on earth and in hell shall confess, because every ear has heard, that the Lord reigns, and is King for ever and ever.
7. But further, since this victory will be certainly beyond all dispute, let me remind you it will be transcendent, because there shall be nothing that can occur to mar it. When the last shock of the dread artillery shall have been endured by the hosts of God’s elect; when the last charge shall have driven the foes before them as thin clouds fly before a Biscay gale; then, as the heroes sit down to read the story of the war, they shall discover that there is nothing to mar the splendour of that glory, for it has been a victory throughout. Of all other victories we read, at one time the balance trembled — sometimes the army on this side wavered; perhaps for the first half day it seemed not only doubtful who would win, but it appeared as though the adversary who was ultimately defeated would certainly be the conqueror. But, beloved, when we shall read history in the light of heaven, we shall discover that God was never conquered — that never did the ranks reel; we shall see that even the most disastrous strokes of Providence, even the most dire calamities that ever occurred to the Church, were only the onward march, the tramp of victories yet to come. I am certain that those things we most deplore today will even become the subjects of the most marvellous gratitude tomorrow. We look today upon the black side of the question, and say, “Ah! here, indeed, goodness was foiled”; but when we look at the whole matter through, we shall see that every dark and bending line meets in the centre of the divine plan, and what seemed the most incongruous and out of place with its fellow, was the most fitting and the most necessary of the whole programme. Satan at the last shall not be able to put his finger upon any place on the battlefield and say, “Here my hosts routed the troops of Emmanuel.” Everywhere it shall be seen that, from the dawning day, when he first struck the blow at Eve and made her sin, to the very last, when Christ shall drag him up the everlasting hills, led captive at his chariot wheels, from the first to the last, the Lord’s “right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
8. Remember, too, that this is a victory all along the line. The general’s cautious eye notices that there the left wing has driven the adversary back, but bring up the reserves for that right wing, do not let the ranks be broken. Stern troops, let your chivalry be seen over there for that wing reels. Generally in the battle some part must fail, while in this portion or the other there shall be success. Ah! but at the last when Christ shall stand, and bear his brow in heaven’s sunlight, and all his angels shall be with him, it shall be seen that they were triumphant everywhere. The blood on Madagascar’s rocks1 shall not defeat the onward march of God’s armies. Saints may be burned, may be sawn asunder, may wander around in sheep skins and goat skins, but they shall be victorious everywhere. Spain may shut her gates against the gospel, and the Inquisition may make that place its stronghold, but as sure as there is a God in heaven, Christ shall be conqueror there. Tyrants may pass edicts to exterminate Christians, conclaves may make decrees to drive out the religion of Jesus, but in every place, in every land, wherever foot of man has trodden this green earth, there shall be victory; from the north to the south, from the east to the west, everywhere shall be triumph — China and Japan, Brazil and Chili, the islands of the south, the frozen regions of the north, even Africa with her sable sons, the dwellers in the wilderness shall bow before him and lick the dust at his feet. There shall be victory all along the line. Not from one place merely, but from all, shall be heard the tune — “His own right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
9. And it shall be a victory unstained by the news of the next day. Not so among the embattled hosts of men. How hard to brook the next day! Then the general’s brow is dark, and his eye is heavy, for the list of the dead and wounded is brought in for inspection. “Another victory like this,” one says, “and I am defeated for ever. It is dearly purchased,” he says, “with the blood of these mothers’ sons. My comrades and companions in arms must bite the ground to let the country live.” But in that last great battle of God the muster roll shall be found without anyone missing in it; as they call their names they shall all answer, there shall not be one left dead upon the field. “How so? How so?” says unbelief, “are they not dead and buried now? Have not their bodies lain to bleach upon the side of the Alps? Have they not been burned in the fire and been scattered as ashes to the four winds? Do the saints not sleep today in our cemeteries, and in our graveyards, and does the deep not engulf very many bodies that were a temple of the Holy Spirit?” I answer, yes, but they shall come again. Refrain your eyes from weeping, oh daughter of Jerusalem; refrain your heart from sorrow, for they shall come again from the land of their captivity. We who are alive and remain shall not have the preference beyond those who sleep, “For the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed; so when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’?” “His right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
10. And sometimes, on the next day, the general feels the glory of the victory is marred, for there are many prisoners; they are not dead, their corpses do not lie on the field, but they have been taken off by the opposing force, and they are a prey; and who knows what may become of them; what dungeons may contain them; to what tortures they may have to endure. But in this last victory of God, there shall be no prisoners, no prisoners left in the hand of his enemy. I know there are some who say that we may be children of God, and yet fall from grace and perish. My brethren, it is a foul slander upon the faithfulness and power of the Redeemer. I know that all he undertakes to save he will save, and he will bring all the troops from the battlefield, every brow crowned with laurel, not one slain, not one a prisoner; the gates of hell shall never enclose the ransomed of the Lord; among the groans of the lost there shall never be heard a sigh from one who was once a saint before God. There are no prisoners. March out your prisoners, Prince of Hell, bring out, if you can, one soul that Jesus bought with blood, one soul that the Spirit quickened, one soul that the Eternal Father gave into the hands of the Great Surety to keep for ever — bring him out. Ah! you do not have even one. “Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered?” Thus says the Lord, the God of hosts, “My ransomed shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads”; then it shall be said, “His right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
11. But, beloved, after the battle is over, the conqueror wipes his brow and says, “Ah, but the scattered hosts may rally, and those who were driven today like chaff before the wind, may rise again, and the campaign may be long, and the struggle fierce, before we have stamped out the sparks of war.” “Sleep in your arms,” he says, “you may be attacked tomorrow, be ready for the cry of ‘boot and saddle,’ for there may be a charge again before many hours are passed.” But not so in this case: the victory is crushing, total, final; it is once and for ever with evil, with darkness, with hell; they shall never again be able to tempt the righteous, or to cast them down, or to pale their cheeks with fear; they shall never be able again to win the world to their dominion, they are routed, routed, routed for ever. Hosts of evil, it is not your heel that is bruised — your head is broken; the Lord has used his people as his battle axe and his weapons of war, and he has cleft you and left you without might or strength for ever and for ever. So, dear friends, this is our joy and comfort, that once the battle is over, the whole campaign is ended; there shall be no further onslaughts; we rest eternally; we triumph everlastingly; no more fights to risk, no more conflicts in which to tug and strive. This shall be the note that shall ring throughout the arches of eternity — “The Lord’s right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory for ever and for ever.”
12. I think these are two good reasons why I should say this victory is transcendent — there is no one to dispute it, and there is nothing to mar it.
13. But yet further we will venture to enlarge upon this victory by showing its details. The ultimate triumph and victory of God in all his purposes will lie in several things. How glorious the fact that all whom he ordained to save are saved! Calling was the first work which he performed in them; each one of them was called, but like the rest of mankind they would not come; their wills were so desperate that they long resisted; the minister preached at them; their mother wept over them; their father entreated them; providence came and hewed them; afflictions broke them in pieces, and they were still unsaved; but there was not one case where God ordains to call, in which the calling has failed. In every case where his electing love has set its purpose, the will is turned around, the affections yield, the judgment gives way, the man is subdued — he is called, he is quickened. There may be some such here tonight, who think, “Well, I never would be saved upon such terms as acknowledging the sovereign grace of God, even if he wills to do it.” Your will must give way before the crushing force of the will of God. He has mysterious ways of finding an entrance into the most reluctant heart, and taking up his throne there for ever.
14. How clearly is this victory seen in the subjugation of the lusts and passions of the called sinner! He may have been a drunkard, he thought he could not give it up, but the rod of iron “dashes in pieces the potter’s vessel.” He may have loved the pleasures of the flesh, they were dear to him as his right eye, but grace overcame the most darling lust, and threw to the earth the most pampered sin.
15. Not less conspicuously will it appear in the perseverance of every saint. Not a stone will have been left unturned by the adversary to prevent the saints from holding on; the caverns of hell will be emptied against God’s redeemed; Satan and his myrmidons will do their utmost to cast them down to destruction, but they shall hold on their way, they shall grow stronger and stronger, and when at last the gates of heaven shall be firmly closed, because there are no more to enter, it shall be proclaimed, while demons bite their iron bands in shame, that not a soul who was written in the Book of Life was lost, not one whom Jesus bought with blood has been unredeemed, not one quickened by grace allowed to die, not one who truly began the heavenly race turned aside from it, not one concerning whom it was said, “These are mine, and in the day when I make up my jewels they shall be mine”; not one of these is lost, but all saved, saved eternally. Oh! that will be a splendid victory! What can be greater? You who know the conflict through which the child of God has to pass will bear me witness that if you get to heaven, you will sing with all your might the Conqueror’s hymn. And I think we all should do the same. I remember saying once that if ever I got to heaven I would sing the loudest there, for I owed the most to sovereign grace. But when I came downstairs, one said to me, “You made a mistake, I shall sing more loudly than you, for I owe more than you do.” And I found that was the general opinion, that each brother and each sister thought that he owed the most to divine grace. Now, if we are all to sing loudest what a shout of triumph there will be! And I suppose the verse in our hymn is quite true to the apprehension of each of us —
Then loudest of the crowd I’ll sing,
While heaven’s resounding mansions ring
With shouts of sovereign grace.
What a transcendent triumph!
16. There shall be not a few to share the triumph, but a multitude that no man can number; for the glory shall be enhanced by the salvation of so many. Heaven is not one of your narrow places for narrow hearted bigots. No, brethren, our largest imagination could never yet grasp heaven, but it will hold multitudes of multitudes. Nor will the praise be any the less, when we consider that there were so many of such varied clans and climes, some of all kindreds on the face of the earth, swarthy or white. There shall be found in heaven the vilest sinner who lived, there shall be brought there the proudest rebel, and the stoutest hearted, and the most obstinate of sinners; there shall be such in heaven as would have made a wonder in hell, some, I say, who would have been such great sinners, if they had been allowed to go to hell, that their dreadful fall would even appal hell itself, but they are in heaven, saved by sovereign grace. And, oh beloved! since there are such people, this will help to make the victory grand, that they were saved by such means, such simple means, by the simple preaching of the gospel; not by wisdom, not by science, not by eloquence, but by the simple relating of the story of the cross. How this will tend to make the triumph brighter than it could have been in any other way.
17. And, oh beloved, this victory will excel all others in the routing of such foes, such cruel, such crafty, such mighty, such numerous foes. Sin, sin, it is a name of horror — sin overthrown. Death — what glooms are concentrated in that word! — death destroyed. Satan — what craft, what cruelties, what malice linger there — Satan bound hand and foot, and led captive. Such a victory over such foes. I find no words in any tongue by which I can describe its magnitude. And oh! the results of that victory, how bright! Souls knit to Christ by such love, tongues tuned to such music, hearts burning with such fire, heaven filled with such devout, such holy inhabitants, the ears of Deity regaled with such grateful music, heaven filled with such myriads of happy spirits. The peaceful results, setting aside the overthrow, will be enough to make this victory grander than all the triumphs of men or angels put together.
18. Say now, and gather up all your enthusiasm to say it — What a victory that shall be, when there shall not be a single trophy in the hands of the adversary. The victory shall be unparalleled in this, that all the success which the enemy thought he had achieved shall only tend to make his defeat the more galling, and add lustre to the victorious King of kings. You see sometimes hanging up in old monasteries tattered flags, that were taken from the adversary; sometimes when the report of battle comes in, we are told the battle was won, that so many cannon and so many flags were left with the enemy. But, oh Lord God! you have not left a single trophy in the hands of your foe. I said he had no prisoners, but he shall not even have a flag, not one truth torn in pieces, not one doctrine of revelation hung up to rot in the chambers of hell; not one single attribute of God that shall be trailed in the mire, not one single truth of Christianity to be laughed at, and despised by fiends, not a trophy; there shall not a hair of your head perish, not so much as that shall Satan gain, not a bone, not a fragment of the saint, either of his body or his spirit — no trophies left. And all this will make hell angry, to think that God gave him the high ground, let him contend with poor feeble men; but God was in man, and fought with Satan — man, a poor feeble worm, fought with Satan, and, like David, he threw the stone of faith at the giant’s head, and destroyed him with his own weapons. God has destroyed death by the death of Christ, destroyed sin by the great Sin Bearer, yes he has destroyed the dragon by the seed of a woman, who bruised his head with that very seed whose heel the serpent once did bite. Glory be to you, oh Lord! This is your victory. The more we muse upon it, the higher our rapture rises, and the more prepared do our hearts grow to peal forth the words of the Psalmist, “His right hand, and his holy arm have gained for him the victory.”
19. II. Secondly; observe that DEITY IS CONSPICUOUS HERE.
20. Man is not made mention of. There is no name of Moses, or of the prophets, or of the apostles here; I do not read the names of Chrysostom and Augustine, nor of those modern fathers of the Church, such as Calvin, and Zwingli — the stars are lost in the blaze of the sun. Oh God! how glorious is your right arm, and how do your disciples, your children, hide their heads and say, “Not to us, but to your name be all the glory!” But notice, beloved, as they are not mentioned it is not because the mention needed to be avoided, for the more we talk about instrumentalities, or rather think of them — (I do not say the more we think of them, but the more we think about them) — the more persuaded we shall be that it only adds to God’s glory to use men, for men are such poor tools to work with. You have heard of the celebrated painter who gained renown by painting with poor brushes, when the good ones were stolen; and Quintin Matsys, who made a cover for the well without tools, when all the proper tools were taken away; he made the ironwork with such poor implements as he could get. So was the skill of the painter or artisan admired in that he could produce such effects under such disadvantageous conditions. Ah! then what an artist must he be! they exclaim concerning the one. And they look upon this piece of ironwork, and say of the other, “What! no engraving tools, no casting, how could he do it?” So when we shall come to look at men, when we look at them in the light which eternity shall reveal, we shall say of the best of them, “How can the Lord have won such victories with such poor things as these!” So that you may mention each one of the instruments, from righteous Abel down to the last preacher of the Word, and yet it shall be true, that the victory shall speak the sole praise of the General. No doubt, dear friends, this will be a part of the splendour of the triumph to think that he did win by man. It was in man that Satan conquered: Adam and Eve were led astray by the crafty wiles of Satan. It is by man that death came, and by man comes the resurrection of the dead. This will be gall and wormwood in the cup of the lost, when they shall see the Man Christ Jesus, the seed of the woman, sitting at the right hand of God. This is judgment’s greatest terror, “Hide us from the Lamb”; and this shall be hell’s greatest horror, “Hide us from the Lamb; let us not see his face.” But glory be to you, most gracious God, for you have lifted man up above all the works of your hands, and given him dominion above all creatures, so that principalities and powers are put beneath his feet in the person of Christ. And all this only proves that “His own right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
21. I wish I might enlarge here and speak of the conspicuous glory of God in this respect, that all the persons of the Trinity will be glorified, the Father, the Son, and the Spirit. All the attributes of God, his unsearchable greatness, and his unrivalled majesty, his grace, his power, his truth, his justice, his holiness, his immutability, these shall shine forth with resplendent lustre. His wondrous works and his terrible acts shall declare his praise; they shall be the theme of every tongue, and the topic of every conversation. “Men shall speak of the glory of your kingdom, and talk of your power.” All his decrees shall be seen in their final accomplishment, every one of them fulfilled, the counsel answering to the providence. Of all that the Father willed, of all that the Son performed, of all that the Spirit revealed, not one thing is frustrated. How shall I gather up these things? Oh for the voice of a mighty angel! Oh for a seraph’s lip of fire, to speak now of the splendour of that last day, when not only the great but the little, not only the abundance of God’s providence, and the great deeps of his counsel, but even the small deeds of his lovingkindness shall be made to sing forth his praise, when not only the leviathan deeds of God shall make the deep to praise the Lord, but even the little fish that move in it, shall leap up to join the chorus, and everywhere from everything, for everything, there shall be heard the tune — “His right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
22. III. We have in our text a third thought, which we can only hint at. In all this — HOLINESS WILL BE GLORIFIED.
23. Notice the adjective, — “His holy arm.” When we contemplate any actions of God, you will notice that the name which cherubs utter, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts,” is always brought out. Where Christ bears sin, and overcomes it, I hear the cry of “Holy, holy, holy,” from the cross. Where Jesus breaks the tomb, and conquers death, I seem to hear the note of “Holy, holy, holy,” for it makes the day holy on which the deed was done. And when he ascends to glory, and the Father says, “Well done,” we seem to still hear the note, “Holy, holy, holy.” In everything, from the manger to the cross, and from the cross onward to the crown, holiness becomes God’s house, and all God’s acts for ever. Is it not, dear friends, after all the hinge of the struggle? Is not this the point, just as you know in great battles, there is one mountain or hill, which is the object of struggle, not for the value of that particular hill, but because on that the battle will depend, so holiness is just the point, the rallying point between God and Satan. Here are the two war cries. The hosts of evil cry, “Sin, sin, sin”; but the cry of the armies of the Lord of hosts is this, “Holiness, holiness, holiness.” Every time we strike a blow it is “Holiness”; and every time they attack us it is “Sin.” Sin is the real object of their aim. When Satan attacks, it is to stab at holiness, and when we resist, it is to guard holiness, or to drive back his sin. Notice this, I say, is the point of the battle, and by that you shall be able to judge on which side you are. What is your war cry? What is your war cry? When Cromwell fought with the soldiers of the covenant at Dunbar, you will remember they were distinguished by their cries, on the one side, “The Covenant, the Covenant”; and on the other side, “The Lord of hosts, the Lord of hosts.” And so tonight there is the cry on either side, “Sin and its pleasures.” Is that your war cry, friend? You say “No,” — how is it then you were at the theatre the other night? You say “No,” — how is it then you frequent the tavern? You say “No,” — how is it then you have so many ill gotten gains about you now? You say, “No,” — how is it you make appointments for deeds of sin, and perhaps tonight, or tomorrow night, intend to fulfil them? I tell you, sirs, there are many of you whose war cry tonight is “Sin, and its pleasures.” On the other hand, I trust there are not a few in this vast throng, who can say, “Oh! sir,” feebly though I speak it, yet my war cry is “Holiness, and the cross” — that goes with it, “Holiness, and the cross.” Ah! beloved you are just now on the side that is laughed at, the world points at you and says, “There are your saints.” Yes, here they are, sir, what dare you say against them? Abide your time, man, and have your jeering now; you shall change that laugh for everlasting howlings by and by. “There are your Methodists; there are your hypocritical professors.” What, sir, dare you say it? The servants of the living God will know how to answer you in that day, when their King shall be revealed in the clouds of heaven, and his glory shall be revealed, and they shall share his triumph, and all flesh shall see it, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken it. The world does not know us, because it did not know him. “It does not yet appear what we shall be, but when he shall appear, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” Come, we will pass that question around again tonight, “What is your war cry?” There has been a great deal of wickedness these last few days in London. I love to see holy mirth; I delight to see men well feasted. I like Christmas; I wish it came six times a year. I like the generosity of those who give to the poor. Let it be extended. I would not stop a smile. God forbid me! But can men not be happy without drunkenness? Can they not be mirthful without blasphemy? Is there no possibility of being happy without lewdness? Are there no other ways of finding true pleasure besides selling your soul to the devil? Oh sirs! I say there have been thousands in this huge city who have been going around the streets, and whose cry has been, “Sin, and its pleasures! Where is the music hall? Where is the Casino? Where is the Coal Hole?2 Where is the tavern? Where is the ballroom? Sin, and its pleasures.” Oh Satan! you have many soldiers, and they are very brave soldiers, and they are never afraid of your cause, nor ashamed of your name nor of your unholy work. Indeed, you are well served, oh prince of hell! And rich will be your wages when your drudges earn the fire for which they have laboured. But I hope and trust there are some tonight who will change their war cry. You have not nailed your colours to the mast, have you? Even if you have, by God’s grace I wish to pull the nails out. Are you determined to die? Will you serve the black prince for ever, and perish with him? Jesus Emmanuel, the Captain of our salvation, bids me cry to you, “Enlist beneath my banner.” Believe in him, trust in him, and live. Oh! trust the merit of the cross, the virtue of the blood, the tears, and the dying groans. This is what it is to be a Christian, and ever afterwards this shall be your war cry — “Holiness, and its cross!” Oh take this, all! Do not fear. The cross with holiness will bring the mortifying of the flesh, the shame of the world, and the reproach of men. Take both, for now the battle is raging. But, oh my brethren, another push, and another, and another, and another, and we shall gain the top of the hill, and the shout of “Holiness and the cross!” shall be answered by the echoes all around the world, for everywhere holiness shall be victorious, and men shall know the Lord. Indeed, and the echoes of heaven shall answer, too, and the spirits of the sanctified shall cry, “Holiness, and its crown!” Then we will change one word of our war cry; and as our enemies have broken before us and are utterly destroyed; as they melt away like the fat of rams; as to smoke they consume away, we will sing for ever, “Holiness, and its crown! holiness, and its crown!” But that shall be only one note: this shall be the song — “His own right hand, and his holy arm, have gained for him the victory.”
24. I wish that some soul would believe in Jesus tonight, so that it might share in the victory. I wish that young man’s heart would be given to Christ tonight, or yours over there. He deserves it from you: if it were only his mercy in having spared you, he deserves it. And you grey headed sinner there, does he not deserve your heart for sparing you so long? Yield, I beseech you; his love meets you. Yield; his terrors threaten you. Yield; lay down your weapons, and be for ever forgiven. May God help you to do it. May the Lord prove his sovereignty and his power tonight in the conversion of many of his chosen; and to him shall be the glory for ever and ever. Amen.