Nowadays if a man is very reverent towards the Word of God and very desirous to obey the Lord’s commands in everything, people say, “He is very precise,” and they shun him.

Or, with still more acrimony they say, “He is very bigoted. He is not a man of liberal spirit.” And so they cast out his name as evil.

Bigotry, in modern parlance, you know, means giving heed to old truths in preference to novel theories.

And a liberal spirit, nowadays, means being liberal with everything except your own money—liberal with God’s Law, liberal with God’s doctrine, liberal to believe that a lie is a truth, that black is white and that white may occasionally be black.

That is liberal sentiment in religion—the Broad Church school—from which may God continually deliver us, for there is something true in the world, after all, and we shall get wrong in heart and rotten at the core if we think there is not!

Only God is pleased to say that the man who trembles at His Word, the man of broken heart, the man who is poor in spirit is such an one as He will look—these are His temples—these, and these only, the men in whom He will dwell!

And I am so thankful for this, beloved Friends, because this is a state which, through God’s Grace, is attainable by all here whom the Lord shall call. Oh, if the Lord said He dwelt in the hearts of the great, there would not be much hope for some of us!

Or if He said He dwelt with the refined and well-instructed we might never have received a visit from Him! But if it is with the poor, happy is it for us, as you see it is easier to grow poor than rich—and God, by His Grace, can soon make us poor in spirit!

If He dwells with the contrite, why should not I be among the contrite? And if He dwells with those that tremble at His Word—well, that is not a very high degree of Grace—surely through His love I may get to that and God may come and dwell with me and make me to rejoice in His company.

For, Beloved, these evidences which are here put down are such as belong to the very least of the saints. If the Lord had said He dwelt with those that had full assurance, it would shut many of us out.

If the Lord said He dwelt with those who had attained to the higher life and walked habitually with Him, that might shut us out, too. But, oh, how condescendingly He has put it—with the poor, the contrite and those that tremble at His Word!

Charles Spurgeon

HT: Pyromaniacs

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