Where Is The Spirit Of The Living God?

Charles H. Spurgeon

There is a want of zeal throughout the modern church. We presently have an abundance of cold, calculating Christians, who profess Christ; but where are the zealous Christians? Where are the leaders of the children of God? How many of our pulpits are filled by earnest, enthusiastic preachers who have an impassioned love for souls? C. H. Spurgeon warns us about this state of affairs below:

“Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white; for they are worthy.” (Revelation 3:4)

My learned and eminently pious predecessor, Dr. Gill, is of opinion that the different churches spoken of in the Book of Revelation are types of different states through which the church of God shall pass until it comes into the Philadelphia state, the state of love, in which Jesus Christ shall reign in its midst, and afterwards, as he thinks, shall pass into the state of Laodicea, in which condition it shall be when suddenly the Son of Man shall come to judge the world in righteousness and the people in equity. I do not go with him in all his suppositions with regard to these seven churches as following each other in seven periods of time; but I do think he was correct when he declared that the church in Sardis was a most fitting emblem of the church in his days, as also in these. The good old doctor says, “When we shall find any period in which the church was more like the state of Sardis as described here, than it is now?” And he points out the different particulars in which the church of his day (and I am sure it is yet more true of the church at the present day) was exactly like the church in Sardis. I shall use the church in Sardis as a figure of what I conceive to be the sad condition of Christendom at the present moment. My first point will be general defilement—there were but “a few names” in Sardis who had not “defiled their garments;” secondly, special preservation—there were a few who had not defiled their garments; and thirdly, a peculiar reward—”And they shall walk with me in white; for they are worthy.”

The holy apostle, John, said of the church in Sardis, “These things saith he that hath the Seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou has a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die; for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Remember therefore how thou has received and heard, and hold fast and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments.”

The first charge of general defilement he brings against the church in Sardis was that they had a vast deal of open profession, and but little of sincere religion. “I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.” That is the crying sin of the present age. I am not inclined to be morbid in my temperament, or to take a melancholy view of the church of God. I would wish at all times to exhibit a liberality of spirit, and to speak as well as I can of the church at large; but God forbid that any minister should shrink from declaring what he believes to be the truth. In going up and down this land, I am obliged to come to this conclusion, that throughout the churches there are multitudes who have “a name to live, and are dead.” Religion has become fashionable. The shopkeeper could scarcely succeed in a respectable business if he were not united with a church. It is reckoned to be reputable and honorable to attend a place of worship; and hence men are made religious in shoals . . . You can scarcely meet with a man who does not call himself a Christian, and yet it is equally hard to meet with one who is in the very marrow of his bones thoroughly sanctified to the good work of the kingdom of heaven. We meet with professors by hundreds; but I must expect still to meet with possessors by units. The whole nation appears to have been Christianized in an hour. But is this real? Is this sincere? Ah! We fear not. How is it that professors can live like other men? How is it that there is so little distinction between the church and the world? Or, that if there is any difference, you are frequently safer in dealing with an ungodly man than with one who is professedly righteous? How is it that men who make high professions can live in worldly conformity, indulge in the same pleasures, live in the same style, act from the same motives, deal in the same manner as other do? Are not these days when the sons of God have made affinity with the sons of men? And may be not fear that something terrible may yet occur unless God shall send a voice, which shall say, “Come out of them, my people, lest ye be partakers of their plagues?” Take our churches at large—there is no lack of names, but there is a lack of life. Else, how is it that our prayer-meetings are so badly attended? Where is the zeal or the energy shown by the apostles? Where is the Spirit of the living God? Is he not departed? Might not “Ichabod” be written on the walls of many a sanctuary? (“A Solemn Warning for All Churches”)

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2 Responses

  1. God is invisible divine energy who has highest knowledge and highest understanding. God is bound by rule of nature who we call absolute truth. Absolute truth never change and it remains constant. God never make any one slave. There is death and birth for every living being but god does not have birth or death. Even universe has birth and death. There are 8.4 million birth and death cycle for every soul. when this cycle finish soul can union with god. God gave us life to understand and experience life ,his creation and god.

    Absolute Truth

    There is birth & death of universe and this cycle never ends.

    There is birth and death for every living being.

    After 8.4 million birth & death cycle of soul, soul reunions with god.

  2. And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment. . . . (Hebrews 9:27 ESV)

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