the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
Charles Spurgeon's "Morning & Evening"
“My word shall not return unto Me void.”
Matthew 13:1 , Matthew 13:2
A most delightful instance of out-of-door preaching, of which the more the better, for without it great numbers of our fellowmen will never hear the gospel. The natural objects around him no doubt supplied the Lord with his illustrations, and these were so homely and full of meaning, that they arrested the attention of all.
Matthew 13:3 , Matthew 13:4
the way side on the trodden pathway
Matthew 13:5 , Matthew 13:6
Some fell upon stony places or spots where the rock was near the surface
Carnal minds foolishly put a literal meaning upon expressions which are evidently figurative, and so discern not the meaning. To understand the gospel is a gift of divine grace.
Those who will not see may expect to fall into such a state that they cannot see.
Four bad soils are mentioned, and only one which is good. A lesson to us to examine ourselves carefully, lest we be found barren.
Sow in the morn thy seed,
At eve hold not thy hand;
To doubt and fear give thou no heed;
Broadcast it o’er the land!
Thou canst not toil in vain:
Cold, heat, and moist, and dry
Shall foster and mature the grain,
For garners in the sky.
Then, when the glorious end,
The day of God, shall come,
The angel reapers shall descend,
And heaven sing, “Harvest home!”
“He shall separate them one from another.”
Matthew 13:24-30 , Matthew 13:36-43
Matthew 13:24-30 , Matthew 13:36 , Matthew 13:37
All the spiritual good in the world comes from him. Whoever the servants may be, the Master who sent them to sow good seed is Jesus, our Lord.
The field is the world; for everywhere is the gospel to be preached, and the church to be formed is in the world, though not of it. The whole world belongs to Jesus: let Satan rage as he may, he is only an usurper. Despite all opposition, it is in this great field of the world that the Lord has sown a church, and maintained it in being.
Satan is a busy agent, and is always doing his best to hinder the good work of Jesus. The seed of the serpent, and the seed of the woman are at deadly enmity.
Our Saviour did not mean such tares as grow in our country, but a sort of mock wheat common in the east. The evil one could not prevent the springing up of the good seed, and therefore he tried to impede its growth, and spoil its harvest by throwing in among it noxious seed. The devil cannot destroy the church, and therefore ha endeavours to mar its beauty by the introduction of hypocrites. These are in many respects so like to true Christians that it is not possible to remove them without expelling genuine believers with them by mistake. Open sinners we can easily remove from the church; but not those who have the outward manners of Christians; however wrong at heart they may be, we are unable to judge them, and must let them remain.
The true character of men will develop itself in due season, and will be clearly seen at the last day. Angels will have no difficulty in discerning between sincere believers and mere formalists. Men may deceive the church to-day, and do it much mischief by creeping into it while they are unconverted; they ought, however, to tremble, for the hour comes in which the unquenchable fires of divine wrath will consume all pretenders.
The church, while yet she ripens here,
Mix’d and imperfect must appear;
Sinners and saints together meet,
The tares are mingled with the wheat.
But a dividing day will come,
And hypocrites must hear their doom,
“Depart, accurs’d, to endless woe,
Prepared for devils and for you.”
Lord, may I then accepted stand
Among the wheat at thy right hand;
Before the angels stand confest,
And hear thy lips proclaim me blest.