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“Unto you therefore which believe He is precious.”—1 Peter 2:7

spurgn05That was Charles Spurgeon’s text for the first sermon he ever preached.  22 years later, and not feeling well, he decided to preach another message from that old familiar text, partially because of its unique significance to him.  I’m glad he did.

I say “I’m glad” with some trepidation, because when I first read these words I felt like someone had just punched me in the gut.  As Spurgeon begins to expound on this text (in his own inimitable way), he describes what it means for Christ to be precious to believers, and the effect that a deep love for Christ has on those who believe.  This was the paragraph that gut punched me.

…he who really has this high estimate of Jesus will think much of him, and as the thoughts are sure to run over at the mouth, he will talk much of him. Do we so? If Jesus is precious to you, you will not be able to keep your good news to yourself; you will be whispering it into your child’s ear; you will be telling it to your husband; you will be earnestly imparting it to your friend; without the charms of eloquence you will be more than eloquent; your heart will speak, and your eyes will flash as you talk of his sweet love. Every Christian here is either a missionary or an impostor. Recollect that. You either try to spread abroad the kingdom of Christ, or else you do not love him at all. It cannot be that there is a high appreciation of Jesus and a totally silent tongue about him.

Spurgeon never was one to pull punches, but I appreciate that.  Sometimes a good punch in the gut is just what I need.

So I am either a missionary or an impostor.  I love Jesus so much that I can’t stop telling people about him, or I don’t love him at all. I mentioned in an old post that I’ve often felt shamed by Spurgeon’s passion for souls.  Today, I’m shamed by his fervent love for Jesus.