The Gospel’s Reception

But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. – 2 Corinthians 4:4-3

Two men go up to the temple to worship, they take their seats side by side in God’s house; the Word is preached to them both; they both hear it, perhaps with like attention; the one goes his way to forget, the other remembers. They come again: the one listens, and the minister is to him as one that playeth a goodly tune upon an instrument: the other listens and weeps; he feels that the word is quick and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword. It comes home to his conscience; it pierces him, cuts him to the quick; every word seems to be as an arrow shot from the bow of God and finding a target in his conscience. And now they come again. The one feels the word at last to be his; he has been led to repentance and faith in Christ through it, and now comes up to sing God’s praises as His accepted child; while the other remains to sing as a mere formalist-to join in worship in which he feels but little interest-to lift up his voice in a prayer when his heart is far absent. If I had here this morning a heap of steel filings and of ashes mixed together, and I wanted to detect the difference between the two, I should have nothing to do but to thrust in a magnet; the filings would be attracted and the ashes would remain. So with this congregation. If I would know to-day who are those who are of God’s Israel, and who are still the baseborn Egyptians, there is nothing needed but to preach the gospel. The gospel finds out God’s people. it has an affinity to them. When it comes to them they receive it, God’s Holy Spirit opening their hearts; they lay hold of it and rejoice in it; while those who are not God’s, who have no part or interest in the redemption of Christ, hear it in vain and are even hardened by it and go their way to sin with a higher hand, after all the warnings they have received.~ C.H. Spurgeon


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