DELIVERED ON LORD’S-DAY MORNING, AUGUST 28, 1870,
BY C. H. SPURGEON,
AT THE METROPOLITAN TABERNACLE, NEWINGTON.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy has begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fades not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”
– 1 Peter 1:3-5
Time fails us, therefore we must mention the sixth blessing at once, and it is INVIOLABLE SECURITY.
The inheritance is kept for you, and you are kept for the inheritance. The word is a military one, it signifies a city garrisoned and defended. Think of a city besieged—Strasbourg, if you will—that is an emblem of your condition in this world. The enemy pours in their shot, they keep up the fire day an night, and set the city on a blaze, and even thus Satan bombards us with temptations, and beleaguers us with all the hosts of hell. Our great enemy has determined to raze the citadel of our faith even to the ground, his great guns are drawn up around our bastions, his sappers and miners are busy with our bulwarks. Even now it may be his shells are tearing our hearts, and his shot is setting our nature in a blaze. Herein is our confidence, our great Captain has walled us around, He has appointed salvation for walls and bulwarks. We are safe, though all the devils of hell surround us, for we are garrisoned by omnipotence. Each believer is kept by that same power which “bears the earth’s huge pillars up,” and sustains the arches of heaven. Jerusalem, you are besieged, but you may laugh your enemy to scorn, he shall never break through your ramparts—
“Munitions of stupendous rock
Our dwelling place shall be,
There shall our soul without a shock
Our vanquish’d foemen see.”
Our enemies shall assemble, but when they perceive that God is known in our palaces for a refuge, they shall be troubled and hasten away, fear shall take hold upon them there, and pain as of a woman in travail. Every believer is kept by the power of God, but the power of God does not produce in us sloth but faith. We are commanded to watch, that is what we are to do, but we are told both to watch and pray, because our watching is not enough, we need God’s watching also, and we are to pray for it. Faith is the under captain of the city. God’s power protects it—“the King is in the midst of her,” but faith is the high constable of the tower, he it is that goes on the walls, arms the warders, strengthens the bastions, and brings help out of the sanctuary. While the sword of the Lord and of Gideon is at work, the Midianites cannot prevail.
This keeping, observe, my brethren, for I must leave the point, this keeping is complete and continuous, it will never end until we shall need keeping no longer. We shall be kept “unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” I believe this means that we shall not only be kept till our souls reach heaven, but we shall be kept till the advent. You say, “How is that necessary?” I reply, only half of our manhood goes to heaven at death, the other part, namely, our body, waits below till the resurrection.
Yet our dust is precious in God’s sight, and therefore it is watched over until the day of Christ’s appearing, for that is the appointed hour for the redemption of the body—
“Sweet truth to me, I shall arise,
And with these eyes, my Saviour see.”
Wheresoever my dust may be scattered, though to the four winds of heaven it be divided, though it pass through every conceivable change and combination, yet each atom of my dust shall hear the sound of the archangel’s trump, or if not each earthly particle of this my frame, yet each essential constituent shall hear the voice of God, and bone to bone each bone shall come, and the body shall rise intact and perfect, for it is kept by the power of God unto the salvation ready to be revealed.
O my brethren, what a glorious thing it is to know that the salvation God has given us in Christ, is a perfect salvation of our complete manhood! There shall not a hair of your head perish, you shall go into the furnace, you shall walk amid the glowing coals of death, but you shall come forth with not a smell of fire passed upon you. At the Lord’s appearing you shall be none the worse for the fall of Adam, you shall be none the worse for your own transgressions, you shall be none the worse for all the scars of battle, you shall be none the worse for dying, you shall be in heaven as bright as God Himself could
have made you if you had never fallen, and never sinned.
Do I exaggerate? Nay, verily, for it is written, “We shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” We shall wake up in His likeness. Oh, the glory of complete victory over Satan’s arts, and Satan’s strength! He shall be defeated all along the line, he shall gain nothing by all his attacks upon our God, and upon us, but we in the image of Jesus shall laugh at the complete defeat of evil, and glorify God and the Lamb forever.
To be continued in Part 8