C. H. Spurgeon on Calvinism (2)
You may be an Arminian in summer, but you must be a Calvinist in the roaring winds of winter. Arminianism is a very pretty sort of theology for a painted boat upon a glassy lake, but they that do business on deep waters, and weather the storms and hurricanes, must have a good substantial bark of everlasting immutable love; otherwise, if the vessel be not staunchly and well built, their tacklings are loose, they cannot well strengthen their mast, and the vessel drives upon the quicksands. Beloved, in my spiritual building I want to get more and more on to the rock, immediately on the rock. I know I am told that the rock does not yield a harvest, that election is not a practical truth; but after all, if I want a house built, let me have it on the rock, for if it does not yield me any present practical results, yet I must have some comfort, I must have some place to dwell in the storm. I can go out to other fields to sow my corn and reap my harvest, but for my everlasting confidence I want a rock.
Rest assured that the doctrines commonly called Calvinistic are the only doctrines that can shut the mouths of devils, and fill the mouths of saints in the day of famine and in the time of extremity. “The Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem, rebuke thee.” When I am bowed down under sin, next to my Bible I love such books as “Elisha Coles on Divine Sovereignty,” or “Dr. Crisp’s Sermons.” Albeit that they do not contain all the truth, yet they teach very clearly that part of it which a troubled spirit needs. Does eternal love ordain sinners to eternal life irrespective of their works? Does the Lord absolutely, out of sovereign mercy, make men to be his children? Did God choose the chief of sinners, and does he never cast them away? Does he say, “I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy?” Does he declare that he is absolutely justified in doing whatever he wills with his own? Does he on such terms as that choose me? Then blessed be his name, such an election as this just suits my case; and I find that believing the doctrine in that light, I can say to all my doubts and fears “Jehovah that hath chosen Jerusalem, rebuke thee.”
- C. H. Spurgeon, Zechariah’s Vision of Joshua The High Priest, January 22, 1865