Charles H. Spurgeon
A church may be soundly asleep, but the Spirit of God can still awaken it. The cultural Christian, the careless believer, the slackest member of a church may, by the power of the Holy Spirit, yet be set on fire for God. Where once the people of a church were a cord of wet wood; now they burn with hunger for the Word of God. Such power too, may come to preachers when the Holy Spirit abides with them. Charles H. Spurgeon comments on this subject:
Yet now be strong, O Zerubbabel, declares the Lord. Be strong, O Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest. Be strong, all you people of the land, declares the Lord. Work, for I am with you, declares the Lord of hosts, according to the covenant that I made with you when you came out of Egypt. My Spirit remains in your midst. Fear not. (Haggai 2:4-5)
Know ye not the difference between the power that cometh of human oratory, and that which cometh by the divine energy which speaks so to the heart that men cannot resist it? We have forgotten this too much. It were better to speak six words in the power of the Holy Ghost than to preach seventy years of sermons without the Spirit. He who rested on those who have gone to their reward in heaven can rest this day upon our ministers and bless our evangelists, if we will but seek it of Him. Let us cease to grieve the Spirit of God, and look to him for help to the faithful ministers who are yet spared to us.
This same Spirit who of old gave to His church eminent teachers can raise up other and more useful men. The other day, a brother from Wales told me of the great men he remembered: he said that he had never heard such a one as Christmas Evans, who surpasses all men. . . . I asked him if he knew another Welsh minister who preached like Christmas Evans. “No,” he said, “we have no such man in Wales in our days.” So in England we have . . . [no] Whitefield, nor any of [his] order; yet, as with God is the residue of the Spirit, He can fetch out from some chimney-corner another Christmas Evans, or find in our Sunday-school another George Whitefield, who shall declare the gospel with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven. Let us never fear for the future, or despair for the present, since the Spirit of God remaineth with us. What if the growing error of the age should have silenced the last tongue that speaks out the old gospel, let not faith be weakened. I hear the tramp of legions of soldiers of the cross. I hear the clarion voices of hosts of preachers. “The Lord gave the word; great was the company of those that published it.” Have faith in God through our Lord Jesus Christ! When He ascended on high He led captivity captive, and received gifts for men. He then gave apostles, teachers, preachers, and evangelists, and He can do the like again. Let us fall back upon the eternal God, and never be discouraged for an instant. (“The Abiding of the Spirit”)
Filed under: Bible, Christianity, Church Leadership, Faith, Grace, Holy Spirit, Prayer | Tagged: Charles Spurgeon, Christmas Evans, George Whitefield, God, Jehozadak, Jesus, Zerubbabel | 4 Comments »