Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Hall of Fame vs. The Hall of Shame

 After spotlighting the shameful and obsequious responses of several "Christian" world leaders in my previous post, I thought it would be refreshing to offer you the thoughts of men like Spurgeon, Owen and Calvin on the subject of Christ & Islam:

C.H. Spurgeon:  "We anticipate the happy day when the whole world shall be converted to Christ; when the gods of the heathen shall be cast to the moles and the bats; when Romanism shall be exploded, and the crescent of Mohammed shall wane, never again to cast its baleful rays upon the nations; when kings shall bow down before the Prince of Peace, and all nations shall call their Redeemer blessed. Some despair of this. They look upon the world as a vessel breaking up and going to pieces, never to float again. We know that the world and all that is therein is one day to be burnt up, and afterwards we look for new heavens and for a new earth; but we cannot read our Bibles without the conviction that—  'Jesus shall reign where’er the sun does his successive journeys run.'  We are not discouraged by the length of his delays; we are not disheartened by the long period which he allots to the church in which to struggle with little success and much defeat. We believe that God will never suffer this world, which has once seen Christ’s blood shed upon it, to be always the devil’s stronghold. Christ came hither to deliver this world from the detested sway of the powers of darkness. What a shout shall that be when men and angels shall unite to cry “Hallelujah, hallelujah, for the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth!” What a satisfaction will it be in that day to have had a share in the fight, to have helped to break the arrows of the bow, and to have aided in winning the victory for our Lord! Happy are they who trust themselves with this conquering Lord, and who fight side by side with him, doing their little in his name and by his strength! How unhappy are those on the side of evil! It is a losing side, and it is a matter wherein to lose is to lose and to be lost for ever. On whose side are you?"  Spurgeon, C. H. (1995). Morning and evening : Daily readings (December 24 PM). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

John Owen [The Glory of Christ (28)]: There are some who regard not these things at all, but rather despise them. They never entertain any serious thoughts of obtaining a view of the glory of God in Christ, — which is to be unbelievers. They look on him as a teacher that came forth from God to reveal his will, and to teach us his worship; and so indeed he was. But this they say was the sole use of his person in religion, — which is Mohammedanism. The manifestation of all the holy properties of the divine nature, with the representation of them unto angels above and the church in this world, as he is the image of the invisible God, in the constitution of his person and the discharge of his office, are things they regard not; yea, they despise and scorn what is professed concerning them: for pride and contempt of others were always the safest covert of ignorance; otherwise it would seem strange that men should openly boast of their own blindness. But these conceptions of men’s minds are influenced by that unbelief of his divine person which maketh havoc of Christianity at this day in the world. 

John Owen [The Sermons of John Owen (32), A Vision of Free Mercy]:  "Earthly supports and contentments are but a thousand failing wiles, which will all vanish in the time of need; the gospel, and Christ in the gospel, is that” unum magnum ,” that “ unum necessarium ,” which alone will stand us in any stead. In this, this island is as the mountain of the Lord, — exalted above the mountains of the earth. It is true, many other nations partake with us in the same blessing. Not to advance our own enjoyments in some particulars, — wherein perhaps we might justly do it, — but take all these nations with us, and what a molehill are we to the whole earth, overspread with Paganism, Mohammedanism, Antichristianism, with innumerable foolish heresies!"

John Calvin [Calvin's Commentaries, Book of Daniel, referring to Wintle's notes on Daniel 7:9 & 13]:  "The ten horns, he thinks, follow the fourth beast, existing during his; own age and leading on directly to Antichrist. He approves of Apollinarius, who interprets the 8th verse of Antichrist, and then explains, very copiously, his sentiments as to where he is to be found. “Very possibly,” he remarks, 'the Gregories, the Alexanders, and the Julii, did not displease God so strikingly while occupying the Papal chair: God only is their judge. But during this reign such innumerable enormities are committed as are worthy of the true Antichrist, and thus rebound upon their heads.' He then runs the parallel between Mohamed and the Papacy, and with great accuracy and spirit treats the false prophet as the Antichrist of the east, and the Roman Pontiff as corresponding to him throughout the west. The 'eyes of a man'” of Daniel 7:8, are explained of the bland and benignant appearance of this insinuating personage, while the blasphemies of his mouth are interpreted of the impious boastings of Mohamed and the Pope. The manner in which both Mohamed and the Papacy have 'changed the times,' is amply discussed, and the language of both Daniel and St. John made applicable to the modern history of the religions of the Crescent and the Cross throughout both Asia and Europe."

Thank God for the fearlessness of such men - men who were much more concerned about the glory of Christ than they were about their own safety and reputation.