For more than a century, Charles Haddon Spurgeon's sermons have been consistently recognized, and their usefulness and impact have continued to the present day, even in the outdated English of the author's own day.
Why then should expositions already so successful and of such stature and proven usefulness require adaptation, revision, rewrite or even editing? The answer is obvious. To increase its usefulness to today's reader, the language in which it was originally written needs updating.
Though his sermons have served other generations well, just as they came from the pen of the author in the nineteenth century, they still could be lost to present and future generations, simply because, to them, the language is neither readily nor fully understandable.
My goal, however, has not been to reduce the original writing to the vernacular of our day. It is designed primarily for you who desire to read and study comfortably and at ease in the language of our time. Only obviously archaic terminology and passages obscured by expressions not totally familiar in our day have been revised. However, neither Spurgeon's meaning nor intent have been tampered with.
All Scripture references are taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (C) 1978 by the New York Bible Society, used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.
The Co-Heirs and their Divine Inheritance
July 28th, 1861
The Apostle has proceeded through a simple but very effective train of reasoning until he gets to this glorious point—“Co-heirs with Christ.” He begins this way—“You did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’” This is a fact which he takes for granted because he has perceived it in the hearts of believers. We do cry, “Abba, Father.” From this he infers that if God has given us the Spirit whereby we call him “Father,” then we are his children, which is plain and clear reasoning. Then he adds—“If we are children, then we are heirs”—though this does not hold true in all families, because all children are not heirs, frequently the firstborn may take all the inheritance; but with God so long as they are children they have equal rights. “If we are children, then we are heirs.”
He goes on to say, “Heirs of God;” for if they are heirs they inherit their Father’s property. God is their Father, they are therefore God’s heirs! True, but God has another Son, one who is the firstborn of every creature. Therefore if we are heirs, as Christ Jesus is the heir of all things, then we are “co-heirs with Christ.” I think you will see that, like links in a chain, these different truths draw on each other—the spirit of adoption proves the fact of adoption; by the act of adoption we are children; if children then heirs; if heirs, heirs of God; but since there is another heir, we must therefore be co-heirs with Christ Jesus. Blessed is the person to whom this reasoning is not abstract, but experimental. Happy is the one who can follow the apostle step by step, and say, “Yes, I have this morning the spirit of a child; I know that my heart loves God, and I look to him as my Father, with trust, with confidence, and with love; then I am surely his child, because I have the Spirit; then I am his heir; I am the heir of God; and thus my faith lays hold on the precious words of this glorious text—“I am co-heir with Christ.”
I would invite you, my brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, this morning, to do three things; first, let us consider the terms of the will—“co-heirs with Christ;” secondly, let us go forth and view the inheritance—what it is of which we are co-heirs; and when we have done so, let us proceed at once to administer the inheritance, for God has made his children administrators as well as heirs.
I. First, then, there is A LEGAL TERM IN THE WILL UPON WHICH THE WHOLE MATTER WILL HINGE. We are called “co-heirs with Christ”—what does this mean?
1. It means, first of all, that our right to the divine heritage stands or falls with Christ’s right to the same inheritance.
We are co-heirs; if he is truly an heir, so are we; and if he is not, neither are we. Our two interests are intertwined and made one, neither of us has any right to inheritance apart from the other; we are co-heirs, Christ jointly with us; ourselves jointly with Christ. So, then, it follows that if there is any flaw in the will, so that it is not valid, if it is not properly signed, sealed, and delivered, then it is no more valid for Christ than it is for us. If there are some points in the covenant of grace where wisdom has been deficient, and therefore by error it may miscarry, or by lack of legal right may prove null and void, it is as surely null towards Christ as towards ourselves, for he is jointly concerned in the matter. If according to law we are only heirs-presumptive, whose rights may be superseded, then our great co-heir, so far as he is co-heir with us, is also superseded. If it is possible that by some decree in heaven’s high court, it should be certified and determined that the inheritance is not rightly ours, because some part of the covenant was left in a precarious state so that it became void and of no effect, then, your inheritance, O King of kings, has failed you in the very day when it has failed us.
I trust, brothers and sisters, that you will lay hold of that thought; if Christ as God’s heir has a perfect right to what his Father has bestowed on him, then so have we, for our rights are coexistent. If our title is true and just, so is his, and if his rights of heritage are true and just, so are ours. Oh! blessed thought for the believer! Jesus must lose the reward of his agonies before we can lose the fruits of them. Jesus the Mediator must lose the glory which his finished work has procured for him, before one of his co-heirs can miss any of it; he must come down from that glory which he now inhabits, and cease to be honored as “the Lamb that was slain, and has redeemed us unto God by his blood,” if any one of his people will be deprived of that glory, and be cast into hell. The will, if valid for one, is valid for all.
But perhaps there may be a lawsuit brought against the will; some antagonist may set up a counter claim; an enemy to the entire family may proceed at once to attack the will with venom and with malice; he may take it into the Heavenly Court, and there, before the great Judge, the question may be tried as to whether the inheritance is legally and lawfully ours. Very well, let it be so; but then it is Christ’s interest that is at stake as well as mine; he will be co-respondent in the lawsuit. When Satan stood up to accuse Joshua, the high priest, he did in effect accuse Christ as well as that chosen disciple, and the Lord was not slow with his response to the objection: “The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?” If Satan brings any accusations before God against any of the Lord’s redeemed, that accusation is made against the Redeemer himself, for God’s people are so one with Christ, that you must first bring the charge against Christ himself before you dare to lay it against any of his elect. Do not say that you can charge the members with sin; you may do so in the inferior courts of earth, but the lawsuit will be ignored in the supreme court of heaven, since before that bar the accepted substitute appears to answer any demands. You must enter your suit against the Head if you would attack the members, for truly the action of law which can be pleaded against the member of the body must be pleaded against the Head itself, for no court can allow a distinction between the body and the head in an application of law. If it is possible that the malice and the graft of hell could invent some scheme by which the covenant could be put out of court, and the promise of grace could be made to fail, then Christ fails with his people, and the heir of all things loses his inheritance as soon as any one of the other heirs will have his right to the inheritance taken away. Our rights are joint rights, and must be either jointly acknowledged or jointly denied. “We are co-heirs with Christ.”
Yet, further, to illustrate the full meaning of the being co-heirs—suppose, after the will had been proved and acknowledged to be right, it will be found that there is nothing left to distribute—suppose, after all this boast and talk about being heirs, there should be no property, or there should even be found a debt against the estate—what then? Why, my brethren, if we get nothing, Christ gets nothing; if there should be no heaven for us, then there is no heaven for Christ. If there should be no thrones for us, there would be no throne for him; if the promise should utterly fail in the fulfillment to the least of the co-inheritors, it must also fail for our Lord Jesus Christ himself. Whether there is a lot of property or very little, we are co-heirs; if there are infinite treasures, Christ has them, and we have them; but if there is no treasure whatever, and faith should end in disappointment, and hope in despair, the calamity which impoverishes us must also impoverish our great co-heir. When we are poor, and in eternity have no shelter; when we in the next world will find no heaven and no bliss—then, wandering as outcast orphans, we will see our Elder Brother an outcast orphan too; if we are penniless, the Firstborn among many brethren must also be penniless, for with him we stand or we fall.
And then suppose that, in dividing up the inheritance, it should be found that, though there is something left, yet it is only a mere trifle, scarcely worth an acknowledgment: enough to excite appetite but not sufficient to satisfy it—what if it should come out in the end, that heaven is not the infinite joy we have been taught to expect; suppose its bliss should be only inferior joy, such as might be found even in this world below—suppose that the harps have no melody, the crowns only little glory, and heaven’s streets have only a slight magnificence—what then? What they are to us they are to our co-heir. Saints with little glory, then Christ with little glory; believers with a small heaven, then Christ with a small heaven. If they only drink a little from the river of pleasure, his drinks must be shallow too, for their joy is his joy, and his glory he has given them. You who have longed for his appearing will be satisfied when you wake up in his likeness.
I have been dwelling on the black side in order to bring the bright one out by contrast. We are co-heirs. So you see if there is any flaw, if there is any action to set aside the will, or if there is found to be no inheritance, or if the inheritance is small, the loss falls on the co-heirs; not on one alone, nor on the other alone, but on the two, since they are jointly designated heirs in the will, and they are only heirs as they stand in relationship with one another. But oh! my brethren, let us rejoice with delight for a moment in the contrast which I now present to you.
There is no flaw in God’s will with regard to Christ. The heathen may rage, and the kings of the earth may join together, but God says, “I will proclaim the decree, I have installed my Son, as King of Zion, on my holy hill.” There is no fear whatever that, by any accident or by any mistake, Christ would miss the honor to which his Father has ordained for him, he must be with his Father where he is. Likewise, there is no fear for you and for me if we are heirs of God. Thus runs the decree, and thus will the fulfillment follow—“I want those you have given me to be with me where I am.” No lawsuit can stand against Christ; it would be idle to dream it for a moment. He has satisfied God’s law, magnified it and made it honorable; he has discharged all the debts which he took upon himself. Who will accuse the Redeemer? Who will lay any thing to the charge of him who rose again from the dead? Nor can any creature accuse his saints, nor can heaven, or earth, or hell disprove our rights or infringe upon our title so long as his title stands undisputed and indisputable. We will see his face; the devils in hell cannot hinder it; we will possess the promised rest, still the fiends that are beneath will not rob us of the heirloom. And, believer, there is no fear that Christ will be the possessor of nothing or heir of little things. He is the Son of God the infinitely rich, and God will not give to his Son a petty dowry or a trifling inheritance. “Ask of me,” he says, and he gives him unlimited permission to ask, not as Herod who would give only one-half of his kingdom, but as one who would give everything to his Son whom he has appointed heir of all things, and by whom he made the entire universe.
And O my soul, your inheritance cannot be small nor your dowry meager, since it is the same inheritance which Christ receives from his Father’s hands. Weigh the riches and treasures of Christ on scales and then count the treasures which belong to the saints. Reach the bottom of Christ’s sea of joy, and then hope to understand the bliss which God has prepared for them that love him. Leap over the boundaries of Christ’s possession if you can, and then dream of the endless limit of the possessions of the elect of God. “All are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God.”
2. There is another point under the first heading which I must not omit. It appears if we are called co-heirs with Christ, then we legally and strictly have no inheritance apart from him.
Soul, this suggests to you a solemn question, “Are you in Christ or not?” Do not think that you can ever be a partaker of the fullness of God unless you are in Christ—with him vitally and personally, one with him. One of the two co-heirs has no rights apart from the other. The signature of the one will not able to separate the estate from the other, nor can he sell it by his own right, nor have it all at his own disposal, or in his own sole possession. He has, in fact, no right at all, except in connection with his co-heir.
Consider this, believer. You have no right to heaven in yourself; your right lies in Christ. If you are pardoned, it is through his blood; if you are justified, it is through his righteousness; if you are holy, it is because he has made you holy; if you are taught the ways of God, it is because he becomes your wisdom; if you will are kept from falling it will be because you are preserved in Christ Jesus; and if you are perfected, it is because you are complete in him, and if you are glorified in the end, it will be because God the Father has glorified his Son Jesus. The promises are yes and amen to you, but only in Christ Jesus, in whom we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who works all things according to his own will and good pleasure. Be assured then, that you are in union with Christ, for without him you have no rights whatever.
3. The title of co-heir contains another mystery which I cannot hold back, although it must be handled with care —Christ, as coheir, has (of his own free grace) so identified himself with us, that his rights as co-heir are not to be separated or viewed apart from ours.
As God, by his own right, the Lord Jesus is possessor of all things, since he made and holds all things together; but as Jesus, the mediator, the central head of the covenant of grace, he has no rights apart from his people. See, brethren, he enters into glory, but not for himself alone, for it is written, “Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf.” [Hebrews 6:20]. When he stands in the presence of God the Father—he appears there for us; [Hebrews 9:24]. Adam’s death was not simply his own private loss, for in Adam all died, and Christ’s life and all the consequences of his obedience are not merely his own, but the joint riches of all who are in him, of whom he is the central head, and on whose behalf he accomplished the divine will. When Christ gave himself for us, he gave us all the rights and privileges which were his, so that now he has, as our Brother, no inheritance apart from us, although, as Eternal God, Jesus has essential rights to which no creature may ever dare to pretend to have.
Yet one more remark before we leave this point. While dwelling on being co-heirs, let us state what an honor is conferred upon us.
To have anything to do with a great man is thought by some persons to be a distinguished mark of honor; to be listed in a will as co-heir with some great prince or noble would indeed be considered a great thing; but what honor is conferred on you, believer, to be co-heir with the King of kings, the One who is called Wonderful, the Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace! You came here today from your toil, and your bones have scarcely forgotten yesterday’s weariness; but you are co-heir with him who rules all of heaven; you came here in poverty and you will go home to a little meal in a small room, but you are co-heir with him who made the planets, and by whom: all things hold together; you have come here weak and feeble, doubting, distrustful, and cast down, but I tell you, though you are weak, and in your own judgment the weakest of all, yet the same hand that wrote Christ heir of all things, wrote your name with his, and until a hand can be found that can blot out your Redeemer’s name you will stand and abide forever and ever.
Come, lift up your head; do not envy any man his high rank or office; do not think any man’s royal blood is worth your coveting; you are greater than the greatest, for you are co-heir with Christ; in this regal relationship you have no one on earth who is superior to you; except those who are co-heirs with you. You do not have an equal, since you are a co-heir with Christ. Soul, you are linked with Christ in the Eternal business of the Eternal Father. When he decreed Christ to be blessed above all the blessed, he decreed you to be a partaker with him. Christ was always considered as having you in him, and you were always considered by God as being in Christ. I pray you consider yourself as being in Christ. Look today at you own self, not as a stray spark, but as a part of Christ’s fire, not as a solitary drop of water, but as a part of that deep sea of love which is in Christ Jesus. Think of yourself now, not as a man or a woman, or as a separate individual, but as a member of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. These are blessed subjects, though I cannot speak on them as I would. I always find when I have to deal with these “best of meats and the finest of wines,” that words fail us; and perhaps it is just as well that they do, for then the excellency of the power is proved not to come from the words of man but from the weight, and fullness, and richness of the gospel. Co-heirs with Christ Jesus! I defy you to exhaust that topic, though you would think about it all next week, no, even if you would ponder the thought all through eternity.
II. IN VIEWING THE INHERITANCE we must mention some things, even though they may cause some of us to become fearful. The inheritance is divided into two parts, the first part of the inheritance is one which flesh and blood would like to do without—it is
1. The inheritance of suffering.
When Christ was God’s heir, and was here on earth, he was heir of the cross, heir of shame, and spitting, and cruel mockings, and beatings. If we are co-heirs with him, we, too, must partake of the same. Come with me, believer, to your inheritance, and behold, just on the edge of your Father’s great inheritance, lies the swamp and mire of affliction. Now this is yours. If this is not yours, neither are the rest, for they are in the same agreement, and they are bestowed to you in the same will. The same inheritance that gives the gift of peace to you, also gives the gift of suffering to you, while you are in this world. Come now, though this is a very offensive part of the inheritance, though it is a part of the birthright which you would gladly leave out and give to your enemies, yet there is a possibility of getting great treasure and great riches out of it; therefore do not scorn it. But if you scorn it, remember, you scorn the rest of the inheritance, for they are all one and indivisible in your Father’s will. Christ’s cross is required of all the heirs of God. Will you take the cross? What! Do your shoulders refuse the pain of bearing it? Then, remember, your head must also then deny itself the pleasure of wearing the crown. No cross—no crown.
If you are co-heir and want to claim one part of the inheritance, then you must take the rest. Are you ready to give up your own claim, and say, “I will not be heir of anything?” So be it, then; but if you are not willing to renounce your claim, then you must be ready to suffer afflictions in this world, for they are a part of the inheritance. But, remember, Christ is co-heir with you in this. “In all their distress he too was distressed, and the angel of his presence saved them.”
2. Added to this you must also be the heir of persecution.
Christ had to be persecuted and so must you. If you, for fear of shame, and out of the love of the flesh, will not follow Christ through an evil generation, neither will you follow him when he marches through the streets of heaven in triumph, amid the praise of angels. You must endure persecution; but then, remember, he will be co-heir with you. “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” “He had not persecuted Christ,” you say, “it was only some poor men and women that he had hauled to prison, or scourged in the synagogue, to compel them to blaspheme.” Yes, but Christ was co-heir with them, and when Saul persecuted the poor servants of Jesus, he persecuted the Master also. Will you be sharers with him? Will you be scoffed at for his sake? Will you be willing to endure the abuses of slanderous tongues?—for if not, inasmuch as you reject one part of the inheritance you reject the rest.
3. There is also a third black inheritance, namely, temptation.
You must be tempted by Satan, you must be tried by the world,
the flesh, and the devil. Do you shrink from it? Do you say, “I will not be a
Christian, if I must always be on my guard, and always fighting against
temptation from the outside and from within?” Remember, in this, too, Christ
is your co-heir. “He was tempted in every way, just as we are.” “For we do
not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses.” Do
you shrink from being tempted? Would you take Job’s jewels, but not his
painful sores and scabs? Would you have David’s crown, but not his caves and
rocks with the wild goats? Would you have your Master’s throne, but not his
temptation in the wilderness? Then, remember, it cannot be; when you refuse the
one, you relinquish all claim to the other. The co-heir is heir to the entire
estate; and if he says, “No, not to that inheritance,” then he is not heir
to any; and if he makes exemption anywhere, he makes exemption to the whole. The
co-heirship reaches from the gloomy darkness of deep affliction up to the bright
indescribable splendor of the throne of bliss. No man can reverse the record.
“If indeed we share in his sufferings,” then we will “also share in his
glory.” Now, let us march with joyful footsteps onward to the other part
of the inheritance. As this is a legal question, and as in matters of wills,
everything should be proven and sworn to, let us have, concerning our
inheritance, the evidence of God: that cannot lie.
Now, first, brethren, as co-heirs with Christ, we are heirs of God—so the text tells us. Oh! who can tell what God is? The finite cannot grasp the infinite. We who are but babes cannot hold the great ocean of Godhead in our infantile palms. We do not know what God is, nor the extent of his attributes. But, remember, the text tells us that all God is, is ours. Is he omnipotent? Your omnipotence is ours, O God, to be our defense. Is he omniscient? Your infinite wisdom, O God, is mine to guide me. Is he eternal? Your eternity, O God, is mine to keep me in existence, that I may ever be preserved. Is he full of love and grace? Then all your love, as though there were not another to be loved, is mine, O God, and all your grace, as though there were never another sinner to partake of it, is mine. “LORD, you have assigned me my inheritance and my cup; you have made my lot secure.” [Psalm 16:5] “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my inheritance forever.” [Psalm 73:26]
Take another passage. Turn to Romans, chapter 4, verse 13, and you will find that there the promise was made to the offspring that he should be heir of the world. “Ask of me,” said his Father, “Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession.” “This world is ours,” says the apostle in another place, and ours because it is Christ’s by right of inheritance. There is nothing here below which does not belong to a believer. If he has wealth, let him use it in his Master’s service, for it is his. If he has poverty, it is better for him, for poverty is his to help him to be sanctified, and to long for heaven. Whatever happens to him—sickness or health, adversity or prosperity, everything here below is his. You may walk the broad acres of this earth, and never look upon a single spot that is not yours. You may cast your eye to the remotest star, or send your thoughts beyond the untraveled depths of space, but look where you will, all of it belongs to Christ, and therefore all of it is yours. You have not come of age, so you do not possess it yet, but the day will come when Christ will come to this earth, and take possession of it, and then his saints will reign with him. “The meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace.”
In Hebrews 1:2, we are told that God has appointed Christ heir of all things.
Then we are heirs of all things—heaven and earth, time and eternity, anything that you can conceive of—the things that can be named and cannot be named, things conceivable and inconceivable, finite and infinite, human and divine. Everything is Christ’s property, and we are co-heirs. Therefore, our rights and our property extend to all things whatsoever they may be. “All things are yours; whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God.”
Then in James 2:5, we are spoken of as being heirs of the kingdom.
Christ has a kingdom that will never be shaken. He rules over everything. Does he call himself a King? He has made us kings. Is Christ a priest? We are priests to our God. Does he sit on a throne? We will overcome and sit down with him on his throne. Will he judge the nations? Don’t you know that the saints will judge the world! Will he be received with triumph by his Father? So will we when his Father will say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Will he be ruler over many things? So will we be when he will say to us, “Come and share your master's happiness!” Does he have joy? We will have joy too, for we will have his joy. Is he glorious? So must we be, for we will be made like him. Is he everlasting? So will we be, for because he lives, we will also live.
Brethren, I pray, if your thoughts now can bring themselves to the matter, gather up all the honors, glories, treasures, riches, that your minds has ever conceived as belonging to Christ, and while the hymn is ringing in your ear—“Crown him, crown him, crown him, Lord of all;” remember that you are co-heirs with him. Oh! it is a glorious truth. Rhetoric must stand back, and eloquence must hold her tongue. The doctrine must be stated in its naked truth. She is, “when unadorned, adorned the most.” This glorious truth is most sweet when earth’s smooth words are taken away, and most lustrous when we no longer attempt to illuminate her with human language. We are heirs with Christ. All that he has, all that he is, therefore, belongs to us.
III. Now, thirdly, and this is the practical part of the
sermon, let us proceed to ADMINISTER THE INHERITANCE.
You say, How can we do that,? Well, in the first place, there is one part of the property which we may enjoy at once. Behold, I present to you the dear cross of your once crucified Elder Brother.
When you came here this morning you were troubled, and as you came in you were envying your neighbor. You were saying of such-and-such an ungodly person, “Everything seems to go well with him, but as for me, all day long I am plagued, and chastened every morning.” You were murmuring at the providence of God. Now, you have heard your Father’s will read, and you find that you are co-heirs with Christ. You discover that Christ had his cross, and you are asked to administer the will. Come, take up your cross and bear it with joy. You will have to carry it. Whether you take it up or not, your murmuring will not lighten your afflictions. You can make your wooden cross into an iron one, if you choose, by being of a fretful disposition. Resignation to God’s will takes the weight out of the cross, but a proud spirit that will not bow to God’s will, will change a wooden cross into an iron one. Now which will it be! You must be chastened, you must feel the goad; will you kick against the goad and therefore wound yourself more than you would have been by the goad itself?
Why will you inflict more sorrow on yourself than God inflicts? Be patient, and you will only feel the rod as it is in God’s hands, but when you are impatient and clutch at the rod, you bring it down with the weight of God’s hand and your own hand too. Now be quiet. Not only be quiet, but be glad. Say, “I count it to be my joy to be permitted to be a partaker of the sufferings of Christ. I will count it to be my highest glory if I may be made a knight of the cross, and may carry that cross on my shoulder: to the world a badge of dishonor, but to me the flag of glory, the badge of honor.” I cannot of course picture what your precise trouble is. Perhaps, some of you have a hardship, and it affects someone who is dearest to you. Others of you have affliction in your children, many of you are tested in your business, and some of you have pain in your bodies with chronic or acute diseases. I know you have a cross, or if you do not, I hope you will soon have one, for where there is no cross there is no Christ. The cross and Christ are nailed together by four nails, and they will never be disassociated in the experience of any Christian. All the sheep of the Great Shepherd are marked with the cross, and this mark is also in their flesh. “If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons.” Now, I say begin at once to administer, by shouldering the cross and bearing your troubles and your persecutions with patience and with joy.
But next: why can’t we also administer to the blessed part of the glorious testament! Brethren, faith can do wonders.
While sense is groveling down below, faith with eagle wing cuts through the cloud and mounts to heaven. Brethren, if you have enough faith, you may this mourning be raised up to sit together in heavenly places with Christ Jesus. Come, faith, and help me now to lay my fingers among the strings of the golden harp. Yes, that harp is mine, and my soul by faith would make every string resound with melody. Glory be to you, O God, glory be to you; my soul is in heaven, I with the cherubim and seraphim would bow, and sing, and rejoice with them. I veil my face in this most joyful moment wiping every tear from my poor eyes, I bid them look on your glory in Christ. My soul would even now take her seat on the throne; where my treasure is, there will my heart be also.
“Even now I will adore him,
With the glorious hosts above,
Who forever bow before him,
And unceasingly sing his love.
I will begin the music here.
And so my soul will rise;
Oh! for some heavenly note to, bear
My passions to the skies.
Even now by faith I join my hands
With those that went before.
Hello! you blood-sprinkled bands
Upon the eternal shore.”
Oh! holy Immanuel, exalted as you are, your co-heirs here below begin by faith to partake of your glory. I think my head wears the crown; the white robe is fastened around me, and my feet no longer walk on the battle fields, but only the streets of peaceful bliss. Jerusalem, my spirit is come to you, and to your glorious assembly. O you firstborn whose names are written in heaven, I take my seat with you and join your rapturous adoration. O God, you Judge of all, my spirit meets you robed in my Savior’s righteousness, and salutes you as my Father and my all.
O eternity, eternity eternity!—time is gone, and change is over, and I am floating on your pacific waves where winds can never howl and tempests never destroy. My soul has made me like chariots and I have raced away to the hills of myrrh and the mountains of frankincense.Last of all, I have another practical point. God has given Christ the heathen for his inheritance, and the uttermost ends of the earth for his possession, and we are co-heirs with him.
Brethren, let us advance to take the property. But how! Why some of you can do so by preaching the gospel to poor sinners in the streets. Others, by teaching children in the Sunday School class. You can say, “God has given these souls to Christ, I am going to take them in Christ’s name.” Others of you who can do little yourselves, can this day assist by sending out men of God to preach the gospel of Christ. Germany belongs not to the cloudy philosopher, but to Christ. Holland, Belgium, Russia, and Poland, belong not to their kings and czars, Christ is the King of kings, these lands belong to us. Go up; take them. Do not say, “There are giants in the land,” you are strong enough to kill them. Do not say, “Lutheranism and Roman Catholicism are mighty.” So they are, but he that is with you is mightier than them. As Jonathan of old, with his armor, climbed up the steep place in the cleft of the rock and began to mow down his enemies, so, believer, alone or with your friend, as God has called you, climb up, for truly the possession is yours, and you may take it. All that the Church needs today is courage and devotion. Only make sure that the Church knows her rights and claims them, let her cease to conform herself to the world, let her cease from her accursed fornication with the state, and she will become the pure, chaste bride of Christ. Let her, then, as Christ’s queen, claim the earth as hers, and send her heralds forth from sea to sea to bid all men to bow before him, and confess him to be their King. God’s power will be with her heralds, God’s might will be with her armies, and the earth will soon submit, and Christ will reign forever and ever. “Say to the North, give up, and to the South, do not hold them back; bring my sons from afar, and my daughters from the ends of the earth.” Say it, Christians, say it this morning; say it by your prayer, your deeds, your constant energy, say it by your good deeds, demand the earth for Christ, demand it for yourselves, for you are “co-heirs with Christ.” I pray you take possession now.
Poor prodigal sinner, may our Father bring you home, for there
is an inheritance even for you. “Believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be
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