Spurgeon at the New Park Street Chapel: 365 Sermons - Thursday, October 24, 2013
Grace reviving Israel
“I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon. His branches shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon. They that dwell under his shadow shall return; they shall revive as the corn, and grow as the vine: the scent thereof shall be as the wine of Lebanon.” Hosea 14:5-7
The most beautiful tree in a garden is the one that bears the most fruit: and there is a promise given to a Christian that after his branches have spread, his beauty shall be as the olive tree; that is, he shall grow and be laden with fruit. The olive tree is evergreen; and so is the beauty of the Christian. Alas for the beautiful Christians we have in some of our places of worship on Sunday! Glorious Christians! If they could be packed up and sent to heaven just as they are, provided their appearances were true indications of their state, what a blessed thing it would be! But alas! On the Monday they have not the same sort of dress they had on Sunday, and therefore they have not the same kind of actions. Dear friends, there is so much Sunday religion in these days! Now, I like a Monday religion, and a Tuesday religion, and a Wednesday religion, and a Thursday religion, and a Friday religion, and a Saturday religion. I do not think the religion of the pulpit, or the religion of the pen, is to be relied upon. I think it is the religion of a draper’s shop, the religion of a corn exchange, religion in a house, religion in the street, and the religion of a fireside, that proves us to be God’s children. But how would some of you come off if you were weighed in these balances? Fine fellows, on Sunday; but poor creatures on Monday! You are not well arrayed then; but ah! If you were Christians, you would always be well arrayed: yes, you would always be as beautiful as the olive tree.
For meditation: God wants us to live the Christian life, not to live the Christian meeting! True worship involves practice as well as praise (Romans 12:1; James 1:26-27).