Richard Sibbes: He rose in spite of them…

24 04 2012

“He rose, even as he died.  He rose a public person, and as a ‘second Adam,’ to give and infuse spiritual life into all his branches.  He rose as our surety in our room.  He rose in spite of those who crucified him, that labored to keep him down all they could.  By the way, this shews that he will rise in his church, and in his children, in his religion, and in his cause.  Let the world and all the devils in hell lay a stone upon Christ, upon his cause, and church, and children; they will rise again, even as his blessed body did, in spite of all the watchfulness of his enemies.”

-Richard Sibbes, Christ’s Exaltation Purchased by His Humiliation in Sibbe’s collected works, vol V pg 327





Spurgeon: The Resurrection of the Dead

20 12 2011

Usually after reading a Spurgeon sermon I’m ready to go out and conquer the world.  Not this time.  The sermon is not Spurgeon at his most inspiring, buthe does preach a very earth resurrection that I think is important for us to hear.  Even though we are a rabidly materialistic age, many think of the resurrection of the dead as a purely spiritual event.  Yet the Biblical doctrine and the Christian confession is that the resurrection of the dead is a resurrection of the body.This has profound implications both for this life and the next, which Spurgeon draws out quite well.  Enjoy.

There are very few Christians who believe the resurrection of the dead. You may be surprised to hear that, but I should not wonder if I discovered that you yourself have doubts on the subject. By the resurrection of the dead is meant something very different from the immortality of the soul: that, every Christian believes, and therein is only on a level with the heathen, who believes it too. The light of nature is sufficient to tell us that the soul is immortal, so that the infidel who doubts it is a worse fool even than a heathen, for he, before Revelation was given, had discovered it—there are some faint glimmerings in men of reason which teach that the soul is something so wonderful that it must endure forever. But the resurrection of the dead is quite another doctrine, dealing not with the soul, but with the body. The doctrine is that this actual body in which I now exist is to live with my soul; that not only is the “vital spark of heavenly flame” to burn in heaven, but the very censer in which the incense of my life doth smoke is holy unto the Lord, and is to be preserved for ever. The spirit, every one confesses, is eternal; but how many there are who deny that the bodies of men will actually start up from their graves at the great day? Many of you believe you will have a body in heaven, but you think it will be an airy fantastic body, instead of believing that it will be a body like to this—flesh and blood (although not the same kind of flesh, for all flesh is not the same flesh), a solid, substantial body, even such as we have here. And there are yet fewer of you who believe that the wicked will have bodies in hell; for it is gaining ground everywhere that there are to be no positive torments for the damned in hell to affect their bodies, but that it is to be metaphorical fire, metaphorical brimstone, metaphorical chains, metaphorical torture. But if ye were Christians as ye profess to be, ye would believe that every mortal man who ever existed shall not only live by the immortality of his soul, but his bodyshall live again, that the very flesh in which he now walks the earth is as eternal as the soul, and shall exist for ever. That is the peculiar doctrine of Christianity. The heathens never guessed or imagined such a thing; and consequently when Paul spoke of the resurrection of the dead, “Some mocked,” which proves that they understood him to speak of the resurrection of the body, for they would not have mocked had he only spoken of the immortality of the soul, that having been already proclaimed by Plato and Socrates, and received with reverence.

We are now about to preach that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust. We shall consider first the resurrection of the just; and secondly, the resurrection of the unjust.

read the whole thing here





John Donne: Death, thou shalt die!

19 12 2011

John Donne was an English poet writting in the 1500′s. It is hard to find a more sexually immoral man in the history of English literature (quite an accomplishment!) However, he did experience a heart conversion through the Gospel, after which he became an ordained minister. His sermons can be quite difficult, but nevertheless intensely powerful. He was well aware of the immensity of his own sin, but through the grace of the Gospel he was also keenly aware of the infinite mercy of Christ the savior. Below is a poem he wrote on Christ’s victory over death (1 Cor 15.55; Rev 21.4). Enjoy the poem. I draw special attention to the last line, which is the defiant cry of the Christian at the hour of their own death. By this he shows that man’s greatest fear has no power over him

DEATH be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not so,
For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,
Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,
Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,
And better then thy stroake; why swell’st thou then;
One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.

John Donne, Divine Sonnet X