Spurgeon on Spiritual Law in the Natural Realm.
In a previous article entitled "Spiritual Law in the Natural Realm," I tried to point
out that Christ has given spiritual tasks to Christians which to natural human minds
seem impossible to accomplish. I cited Christ's Feeding of
the Five Thousand (Matthew 14:13-21) as a lesson Christ gave His disciples in how
to go about the accomplishment of such tasks requiring His help from the spiritual
realm. One such task which Christ gave to Christians of our age is the preaching of
His gospel to "all creation." (Mark 16:15).
Today I found this same lesson, taught by Jesus to His disciples in Luke 5:1-11,
brought out clearly and beautifully in one of the Devotionals of Charles Spurgeon, a
foremost English preacher of the 19th century. I quote this Devotional writing for
you here. F. M. Perry.
The following is taken from Charles Haddon Spurgeon's Devotional for the
Morning of October 8:
"Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught." (Luke 5:4, KJV)
We learn from this narrative, the necessity of human agency. The draught of fishes
was miraculous, yet neither the fisherman nor his boat, nor his fishing tackle were
ignored; but all were used to take the fishes. So in the saving of souls, God worketh
by means; and while the present economy of grace shall stand, God will be pleased
by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. When God worketh
without instruments, doubtless he is glorified; but he hath himself selected the plan
of instrumentality as being that by which he is most magnified in the earth. Means
of themselves are utterly unavailing. "Master, we have toiled all the night and have
taken nothing." What was the reason of this? Were they not fishermen plying their
special calling? Verily, they were no raw hands; they understood the work. Had
they gone about the toil unskilfully? No. Had they lacked industry? No, they had
toiled. Had they lacked perseverance? No, they had toiled all the night. Was there a
deficiency of fish in the sea? Certainly not, for as soon as the Master came, they
swam to the net in shoals. What, then, is the reason? Is it because there is no power
in the means of themselves apart from the presence of Jesus? "Without him we can
do nothing." But with Christ we can do all things. Christ's presence confers success.
Jesus sat in Peter's boat, and his will, by a mysterious influence, drew the fish to the
net. When Jesus is lifted up in his Church, his presence is the Church's power-the
shout of a king is in the midst of her. "I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto
me." Let us go out this morning on our work of soul fishing, looking up in faith,
and around us in solemn anxiety. Let us toil till night comes, and we shall not
labour in vain, for he who bids us let down the net, will fill it with fishes.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-1892) was England's best-known Baptist preacher
for most of the second half of the 19th century. Many of his written works may be
found on the World Wide Web. For instance, click on http://www.spurgeon.org.