Well, we have examined this rich promise; we as a church are looking at it; we are saying, “Is that ours?” I think most of the members will say, “It is; for God has poured out upon us showers of blessing in their season.” Well, then, if the promise is ours, the precept is ours, as much as the promise. Ought we not to ask God to continue to make us a blessing? Some say I did so-and-so when I was a young man; but supposing you are fifty, you are not an old man now. Is there not something you can do? It is all very well to talk about what you have done; but what are you doing now? I know what it is with some of you; you shined brightly once, but your candle has not been snuffed lately, and so it does not shine so well. May God take away some of the worldly cares, and snuff the candles a little! You know there were snuffers and snuffer-trays provided in the temple for all the candles, but no extinguishers; and if there should be a poor candle here this morning, with a terrific snuff, that has not given a light for a long while, you will have no extinguisher from me, but I hope you will always have a snuffing. I thought the first time when I came to the lamps this morning it would be to snuff them. That has been the intention of my sermon—to snuff you a little—to set you to work for Jesus Christ. O Zion, shake thyself from the dust! O Christian, raise thyself from thy slumbers! Warrior, put on thy armor! Soldier, grasp thy sword! The captain sounds the alarm of war. O sluggard! why sleepest thou? O heir of heaven, has not Jesus done so much for thee, that thou shouldst live to him? O beloved brethren, purchased with redeeming mercies, girt about with loving-kindness and with tenderness, “Now for a shout of sacred joy.” and after that, to the battle!
From the Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, Volume 1, Sermon 28 by Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Adam and Eve had fallen from their position of innocence by disobeying God’s command. This is sin. Whenever someone sins, there are consequences. Sometimes those consequences are immediate and sometimes they come later, but they always happen. Here is what God did.
And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: 15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. 16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. 17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; 18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; 19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. (Genesis 3:14-19)
First, the serpent is held accountable. There is some debate over whether God judged the physical animal Satan used or Satan himself. It appears to this writer that God judged them both. The physical serpent was cursed to crawl on his belly. (vs. 14) The apparent reason for this is that it was complicit somehow in Satan’s work. Satan in turn was condemned by the seed of the woman which would “bruise” his head. (vs. 15)
We often get the idea that work is a bad thing. However, God didn’t create work to be that way. In the Garden of Eden, Adam had work responsibilities.
And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. (Gen. 2:15)
Notice first that God put Adam in the garden. God was the One Who created work. As we saw in the previous verses, God made everything good, so work must be good. In Genesis 3, work became difficult due to sin, but work itself was created by God to be good for mankind. God made human beings to be productive. Continue reading →
Christians often talk about “doing the Lord’s work” or “serving God”, but what is the ultimate work of God? Jesus provides us with a definition that may surprise you.
John 6:28-29 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? 29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. Continue reading →
“But I don’t feel like it!” This is a common excuse I hear from my children on a regular basis when I ask them to do something. However, it is an excuse that adults often use as well. In the Christian life there are a number of practices we might call “Christian disciplines”. These include prayer, Bible study, worship, and witnessing. Too often we neglect these disciplines for no better reason than we just don’t feel like practicing them. Continue reading →