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to the present day, even in the outdated English of the author’s own day.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.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-1892)
Help From on High
You who are King of kings and Lord of lords, we worship You.
Before Jehovah’s awful throne
We bow with sacred joy.
We can truly say that we delight in God. There was a time when we feared
You, O God, with the fear of bondage. Now we reverence, but we love as
much as we reverence. The thought of Your Omnipresence was once horrible
to us. We said: “Where shall we flee from His presence?” and it seemed
to make hell itself more dreadful because we heard a voice, “If I make my
bed in hell, behold, You are there:” But now, O Lord, we desire to find
You. Our longing is to feel Your presence, and it is the heaven of
heavens when You are there. The sick bed is soft when You are there.
The furnace of affliction grows cool when You are there, and the house of
prayer when You are present is none other than the house of God, and it
is the very gate of heaven.
Come near, our Father, come very near to Your children. Some of us are
very weak in body and faint in heart. Soon, O God, lay Your right hand
on us and say to us, “Fear not.” Perhaps, some of us are alike, and the
world is attracting us. Come near to kill the influence of the world with
Your superior power.
Even to worship may not seem easy to some. The dragon seems to pursue
them, and floods out of his mouth wash away their devotion. Give to them
great wings as of an eagle, that each one may fly away in the place
prepared for him and rest in the presence of God today.
Our Father, come and rest Your children now. Take the helmet from our
brow, remove from us the weight of our heavy armor for awhile, and may we
just have peace, perfect peace, and be at rest. Oh! help us, we pray
You, now. As You have already washed Your people in the fountain filled
with blood and they are clean, now this morning wash us from defilement
in the water. With the basin and with the pitcher, O Master, wash our
feet again. It will greatly refresh; it will prepare us for innermost
fellowship with Yourself. So did the priests wash before they went in
the holy place.
Lord Jesus, take from us now everything that would hinder the closest
communion with God. Any wish or desire that might hamper us in prayer
remove, we pray You. Any memory of either sorrow or care that might
hinder the fixing of our affection wholly on our God, take it away now.
What have we to do with idols any more? You have seen and observed us.
You know where the difficulty lies. Help us against it, and may we now
come boldly, not in the Holy place alone, but in the Holiest of all,
where we should not dare to come if our great Lord had not torn the veil,
sprinkled the mercy seat with His own blood, and asked us to enter.
Now, we have come close up to Yourself, to the light that shines between
the wings of the Cherubim, and we speak with You now as a man speaks with
his friends. Our God, we are Yours. You are ours. We are now concerned
in one business, we are leagued together for one battle. Your battle is
our battle, and our fight is Yours. Help us, we pray You. You who
strengthen Michael and his angels to cast out the dragon and his angels,
help poor flesh and blood that to us also the word may be fulfilled: “The
Lord shall bruise Satan under your feet, shortly.”
Our Father, we are very weak. Worst of all we are very wicked if left to
ourselves, and we soon fall a prey to the enemy. Therefore help us. We
confess that sometimes in prayer when we are nearest to You at that very
time some evil thought comes in, some wicked desire. Oh! what poor
simpletons we are. Lord help us. We feel as if we would now come closer
to You still and hide under the shadow of Your wings. We wish to be lost
in God. We pray that You may live in us, and not we live, but Christ
live in us and show Himself in us and through us.
Lord sanctify us. Oh! that Your spirit might come and saturate every
faculty, subdue every passion, and use every power of our nature for
obedience to God.
Come, Holy Spirit, we do know You; You have often overshadowed us. Come,
more fully take possession of us. Standing now as we feel we are right
up at the mercy seat our very highest prayer is for perfect holiness,
complete consecration, entire cleansing from every evil. Take our heart,
our head, our hands, our feet, and use us all for You. Lord take our
substance, let us not hoard it for ourselves, nor spend it for ourselves.
Take our talent let us not try to educate ourselves that we may have the
reputation of being wise, but let every gain of mental attainment be
still that we may serve You better.
May every breath be for You; may every minute be spent for You. Help us
to live while we live and while we are busy in the world as we must be,
for we are called to it, may we sanctify the world for Your service. May
we be lumps of salt in the midst of society. May our spirit and temper
as well as our conversation be heavenly; may there be an influence about
us that shall make the world the better before we leave it. Lord hear us
in this thing.
And now that we have Your ear we would pray for this poor world in which
we live. We are often horrified by it. O, Lord, we could wish that we
did not know anything about it for our own comfort. We have said, “Oh,
for a house in some vast wilderness!” We hear of oppression and robbery
and murder, and men seem let loose against each other. Lord, have mercy
on this great and wicked city. What is to be done with these millions?
What can we do? At least help every child of Yours to do his utmost.
May none of us contribute to the evil directly or indirectly, but may we
contribute to the Good that is in it.
We feel we may speak with You now about this, for when Your servant
Abraham stood before You and spoke with such wonderful familiarity to
You, he pleaded for Sodom; and we plead for London. We would follow the
example of the Father of the Faithful and pray for all great cities, and
indeed for all the nations. Lord let Your kingdom come. Send forth Your
light and Your truth. Chase the old dragon from his throne with all his
hellish crew. Oh! that the day might come when even on earth the Son of
the woman, the Man-child, should rule the nations, not with a broken
staff of wood, but with an enduring scepter of iron, full of mercy, but
full of power, full of grace, but yet irresistible. Oh! that that might
soon come, the personal advent of our Lord! We long for the millennial
triumph of His Word.
Until then, O Lord, prepare us for the fight, and make us to be among
those who overcome through the blood of the Lamb and through the word of
our testimony, because we “do not want to love our lives more than
We lift our voice to You in prayer; also, for all our dear ones. Lord
bless the sick and make them well as soon as it is right they should be.
Sanctify to them all they have to bear. There are also dear friends who
are very weak; some are trembling. God bless them. While the tent is
being taken down, may the inhabitant within look on with calm joy, for we
shall by and by “be clothed with our house that is from heaven.” Lord
help us to not cling to all these things here below. May we live here
like strangers and make the world not a house but an inn in which we eat
and lodge, expecting to be on our journey tomorrow.
Lord save the unconverted, and bring out, we pray You, from among them
those who are converted, but who have not confessed Christ. May the
church be built up by many who, having believed, are baptized unto the
sacred name. We pray You go on and multiply the faithful in the land.
Oh! that You would turn the hearts of men to the gospel once more. Your
servant is often very heavy in heart because of the departures from the
faith. Oh I bring them back; let not Satan take away any more of the
stars with his tail, but may the lamps of God shine bright. Oh! You that
walk among the seven golden candlesticks trim the flame, pour forth the
oil, and let the light shine brightly and steadily. Now, Lord, we cannot
pray any longer, though we have a thousand things to ask for. Your
servant cannot, so he begs to leave a broken prayer at the mercy seat
with this at the foot of it: We ask in the name of Jesus Christ Your Son.
The Wonders of Calvary
Great God, there was a time when we dreaded the thought of coming near to
You, for we were guilty and You were angry with us, but now we will
praise You because Your anger is turned away and You comfort us. Yes,
and the very throne which once was a place of dread has now become the
place of shelter. I flee to You to hide me.
We long now to get away from the world, even from the remembrance of it
and have fellowship with the world to come by speaking with Him that was,
and is, and is to come, the Almighty. Lord we have been worried and
wearied oftentimes with care, but with You care comes to an end, all
things are with You, and when we live in You, we live in wealth, in sure
repose, in constant joy.
We have to battle with the sons of men against a thousand errors and
unrighteousnesses, but when we flee to You, there is all truth and purity
and holiness, and our heart finds peace. Above all, we have to battle
with ourselves, and we are very much ashamed of ourselves. After many
years of great mercy, after tasting of the powers of the world to come,
we still are so weak, so foolish; but oh! when we get away from self to
God, there all is truth and purity and holiness, and our heart finds
peace, wisdom, completeness, delight, joy, victory.
Oh! bring us, then, we pray You, now near to Yourself. Let us bathe
ourselves in communion with our God. Blessed be the love which chose us
before the world began. We can never sufficiently adore You for Your
sovereignty, the sovereignty of love which saw us in the ruins of the
Fall, yet loved us anyway.
We praise the God of the Eternal Council Chamber and of the Everlasting
Covenant, but where shall we find sufficiently fit words with which to
praise Him who gave us grace in Christ His Son, before He spread the
We also bless You, O God, as the God of our redemption, for You have so
loved us as to give even Your dear Son for us. He gave Himself, His very
life for us that He might redeem us from all iniquity and separate us
unto Himself to be His peculiar people, zealous for good works.
Never can we sufficiently adore free grace and undying love. The wonders
of Calvary never cease to be wonders, they are growing more marvelous in
our esteem as we think of Him who washed us from our sins in His own
blood. Nor can we cease to praise the God of our regeneration who found
us dead and made us live, found us at enmity and reconciled us, found us
loving the things of this world and lifted us out of the muck and mire of
selfishness and worldliness in the love of divine everlasting things.
O Spirit of God, we love You this day, especially for dwelling in us.
How can You abide in so rude a habitation, How can You make these bodies
to be Your temples, and yet You do so, for which let Your name be held in
reverence so long as we live.
O Lord, we would delight ourselves in You this day. Give us faith and
love and hope that with these three graces we may draw very near to the
Triune God. You will keep us, You will preserve us, You will feed us,
You will lead us, and You will bring us to the mind of God, and there
will You show us Your love, and in the glory everlasting and boundless,
there will You make us know and taste and feel the joys that cannot be
But a little longer waiting and we shall come to the golden shore; but a
little longer fighting and we shall receive the crown of life that does
not fade away.
Lord, get us up above the world. Come, Holy Spirit, heavenly Dove, and
mount and bear us on Your wings, far from these inferior sorrows and
inferior joys, up where eternal ages roll. May we ascend in joyful
contemplation, and may our spirit come back again, strong for all its
service, armed for all its battles, armored for all its dangers, and made
ready to live heaven on earth until soon we shall live heaven in heaven.
Great Father, be with Your waiting people, any in great trouble please
greatly help; any that are despondent sweetly comfort and cheer; any that
have erred and are smarting under their own sin, bring them back and heal
their wounds; any that are panting after holiness give them the desire of
their hearts; any that are longing for usefulness lead them in ways of
Lord, we want to live while we live. We do pray that we may not merely
groan out an existence here below, nor live as earthworms crawling back
in our holes and dragging now and then a withered leaf with us; but Oh!
give us to live as we ought to live, with a new life that You have put in
us, with the divine quickening which has lifted us as much above common
men as men are lifted above the beasts that perish.
Do not let us always be hampered like poor half-hatched birds within the
egg; may we chip the shell today and get out in the glorious liberty of
the children of God. Grant us this, we pray You.
Lord, visit our church. We have heard Your message to the churches at
Ephesus; it is a message to us also. Oh! do not let any of us lose our
first love. Let not our church grow cold and dead. We are not, we fear,
what once we were. Lord revive us!
All our help must come from You. Give back to the church its love, its
confidence, its holy daring, its consecration, its generousness, its
holiness. Give back all it ever had and give it much more. Take every
member and wash his feet, sweet Lord, most tenderly, and set us with
clean feet in a clean road, with a clean heart to guide them, and bless
us as You will in a divine fashion.
Bless us, our Father, and let all the churches of Jesus Christ partake of
care and tenderness. Walking among the golden candlesticks trim every
lamp and make every light, even though it burns feebly now, to shine out
gloriously through Your care.
Now bless the sinners. Lord convert them. O God, save men, save this
great city, this wicked city, this slumbering dead city. Lord, arouse
it, arouse it by any means, that it may turn to its God. Lord save
sinners all the world over, and let Your precious Word be fulfilled.
“Behold He comes with clouds.” Why do You delay? Delay no longer, O, our
Lord. And now to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost be glory forever and ever.
The Wings of Prayer
Our Father, Your children who know You delight themselves in Your
presence. We are never happier than when we are near You. We have found
a little heaven in prayer. It has eased our load to tell You of its
weight; it has relieved our wound to tell You of its hurt; it has
restored our spirit to confess to You its wanderings. No place like the
mercy seat for us.
We thank You, Lord, that we have not only found benefit in prayer, but in
the answers to it we have been greatly enriched. You have opened Your
hidden treasures to the voice of prayer; You have supplied our
necessities as soon we have cried to You; yes, we have found it true:
“Before they call I will answer, and while they are yet speaking I will
We do bless You, Lord, for instituting the blessed ordinance of prayer.
What could we do without it, and we take great shame to ourselves that we
should use it so little. We pray that we may be men and women of prayer,
taken up with it, that it may take us up and bear us on its wings towards
And now at this hour will You hear the voice of our supplication. First,
we ask at Your hands, great Father, complete forgiveness for all our sins
and shortcomings. We hope we can say with truthfulness that we do from
our heart forgive all those who have in any way trespassed against us.
There lies not in our heart, we hope, a thought of enmity towards any
man. However we have been slandered or wronged, we would, with our
inmost heart, forgive and forget it all.
We come to You and pray that, for Jesus’s sake, and through the virtue of
the blood once shed for many for the remission of sins, You would give us
perfect pardon of every sin of the past. Blot out, O God, all our sins
like a cloud, and let them never be seen again. Grant us also the peace-
speaking word of promise supplied by the Holy Spirit, that being
justified by faith we may have peace with God through Jesus Christ our
Lord. Let us be forgiven and know it, and may there remain no lingering
question in our heart about our reconciliation with God, but by a firm,
full assurance based on faith in the finished work of Christ may we stand
as forgiven men and women against whom transgression shall never be
mentioned forever again.
And then, Lord, we have another mercy to ask which shall be the burden of
our prayer. It is that You would help us to live such lives as pardoned
men should live. We have but a little time to live here, for our life is
but a vapor; soon it vanishes away; but we are most anxious that we may
spend the time of our sojourning here in holy fear, that grace may be on
us from the commencement of our Christian life even to the earthly close
Lord, You know there are some that have not yet begun to live for You,
and the prayer is now offered that they may today be born again. Others
have been long in Your ways and are not weary of them. We Sometimes
wonder that You arc not weary of us, but assuredly we delight ourselves
in the ways of holiness more than ever we did. Oh! that our ways were
directed to keep Your statutes without slipping or flaws. We wish we
were perfectly obedient in thought, and word, and deed, entirely
sanctified. We shall never be satisfied till we wake up in Christ’s
likeness, the likeness of perfection itself. Oh! wake us to this
perfection, we beseech You. May experience teach us more and more how to
avoid occasions of sin. May we grow more watchful; may we have a greater
supremacy over our own spirit; may we be able to control ourselves under
all circumstances, and so act that if the Master were to come at any
moment we should not be ashamed to give our account in His hands.
Lord, we are not what we want to be. This is our sorrow. Oh! that You
would, by Your Spirit, help us in the walks of life to adorn the doctrine
of God our Saviour in all things. As men of business, as work-people, as
parents, as children, as servants, as masters, whatever we may be, may we
be such that Christ may look on us with pleasure. May His joy be in us,
for then only can our joy be full.
Dear Savior, we are Your disciples, and You are teaching us the art of
living; but we are very dull and very slow, and beside, there is such a
bias in our corrupt nature, and there are such examples in the world, and
the influence of an ungodly generation tells even on those that know You.
O, dear Saviour, do not be impatient with us, but still teach us at Your
feet, till at last we shall have learned some of the sublime lessons of
self-sacrifice, of meekness, humility, fervor, boldness, and love which
Your life is fit to teach us. O Lord, we beseech You to mold us in Your
own image. Let us live in You and live like You. Let us gaze on Your
glory till we are transformed by the sight and become Christlike among
the sons of men.
Lord, hear the confessions of any that have backslidden, who are rather
marring Your image than perfecting it. Hear the prayers of any that are
conscious of great defects during the past. Give them peace of mind by
pardon, but give them strength of mind also to keep clear of such
mischief in the future. O Lord, we are sighing and crying more and more
after Yourself. The more we have of You the more we want You; the more
we grow like You; the more we perceive our defects, and the more we pine
after a higher standard to reach even to perfection itself.
Oh! help us. Spirit of the living God, continue still to work in us.
Let the groanings that cannot be uttered be stilled within our Spirit,
for these are growing pains, and we shall grow while we can sigh and cry,
while we can confess and mourn; yet this is not without a blessed
hopefulness that He that has begun a good work in us will perfect it in
the day of Christ.
Bless, we pray You, at this time, the entire church of God in every part
of the earth. Prosper the work and service of Christian people, however
they endeavor to spread the kingdom of Christ. Convert the heathen;
enlighten those that are in any form of error. Bring the entire church
back to the original form of Christianity. Make her first pure and then
she shall be united. O Savior, let Your kingdom come. Oh! that You would
reign and Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
We pray You use every one of us according as we have ability to be used.
Take us, and let no talent be wasted in the treasure house, but may every
dollar of Yours be put out in trading for You in the blessed market of
soul-winning. Oh! give us success. Increase the gifts and graces of
those that are saved. Bind us in closer unity to one another than ever.
Let peace reign; let holiness adorn us.
Hear us as we pray for all lands, and then for all sorts of men, from the
Sovereign on the throne to the peasant in the cottage. Let the
benediction of heaven descend on men, through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Transcribed by Tony Capoccia of
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