The Sleep of a Quiet Conscience

For so He giveth His beloved sleep. – Psalm 127:2

(God) gives His beloved the sleep of a quiet conscience. I think most of you saw that splendid picture, in the Exhibition of the Royal Academy-the Sleep of Argyle-where he lay slumbering on the very morning before his execution. You saw some noblemen standing there, looking at him, almost with compunction; the jailer is there, with his keys rattling; but positively the man sleeps, though tomorrow morning his head shall be severed from his body, and a man shall hold it up, and say, “This was the head of a traitor.” He slept because he had a quiet conscience: for he had done no wrong. Then look at Peter. Did you ever notice that remarkable passage, where it is said that Herod intended to bring out Peter on the morrow; but, behold, as Peter was sleeping between two guards, the angel smote him? Sleeping between two guards, when on the morrow he was to be crucified or slain! He cared not, for his heart was clear; he had committed no ill. He could say, “If it be right to serve God or man, judge ye;” and, therefore, he laid him down and slept.

O sirs! do ye know what the sleep of a quiet conscience is? Have you ever stood out and been the butt of calumny-pelted by all men; the object of scorn-the laugh, the song of drunkards? And have ye known what it is, after all, to sleep, as if you cared for nothing, because your heart was pure? Ah! ye who are in debt-ah! ye who are dishonest-ah! ye who love not God, and love not Christ-I wonder ye can sleep, for sin doth put pricking thorns in the pillow. Sin puts a dagger in a man’s bed, so that whichever way he turns it pricks him.

But a quiet conscience is the sweetest music that can lull the soul to sleep. The demon of restlessness does not come to that man’s bed who has a quiet conscience-a conscience right with God-who can sing-

With the world, myself, and thee,
I, ere I sleep, at peace shall be.

“So he giveth his beloved sleep.” ~ C.H. Spurgeon


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