Sermon 150. India's Ills and England's Sorrows
Delivered on Sabbath Morning, September 6, 1857, by the
REV. C.H. SPURGEON
at the Music Hall, Royal Surrey Gardens.
"Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughterof my people."-Jeremiah 9:1.
SOMETIMES tears are base things; the offspring of a cowardly spirit. Some men weep when they should knit their brows, andmany a woman weepeth when she should resign herself to the will of God. Many of those briny drops are but an expression ofchild-like weakness. It were well if we could wipe such tears away, and face a frowning world with a constant countenance.But oft times tears are the index of strength. There are periods when they are the noblest things in theworld. The tears of penitents are precious: a cup of them were worth a king's ransom. It is no sign of weakness when aman weeps for sin, it shows that he hath strength of mind; nay more, that he hath strength imparted by God, which enableshim to forswear his lusts and overcome his passions, and to turn unto God with full purpose of heart. And there are othertears, too, which are the evidences not of weakness, but of might-the tears of tender sympathy are the children of strongaffection, andthey are strong like their parents. He that loveth much, must weep much; much love and much sorrow must go together inthis vale of tears. The unfeeling heart, the unloving spirit, may pass from earth's portal to its utmost bound almost withouta sigh except for itself; but he that loveth, hath digged as many wells of tears as he has chosen objects of affection; forby as many as our friends are multiplied, by so many must our griefs be multiplied too, if we have love enough to share intheirgriefs and to bear their burden for them. The largest hearted man will miss many sorrows that the little man will feel,but he will have to endure many sorrows the poor narrow-minded spirit never knoweth. It needs a mighty prophet like Jeremiahto weep as mightily as he. Jeremiah was not weak in his weeping; the strength of his mind and the strength of his love werethe parents of his sorrow. "Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and nightforthe slain of the daughter of my people." This is no expression of weak sentimentalism; this is no utterance of mere whiningpresence; it is the burst of a strong soul, strong in its affection, strong in its devotion, strong in its self-sacrifice.I would to God we knew how to weep like this; and if we might not weep so frequently as Jeremy I wish that when we did weep,we did weep as well.
It would seem as if some men had been sent into this world for the very purpose of being the world's weepers. God's greathouse is thoroughly furnished with everything, everything that can express the thoughts and the emotions of the inhabitant,God hath made. I find in nature, plants to be everlasting weepers. There by the lonely brook, where the maiden cast away herlife, the willow weeps for ever; and there in the grave yard where men lie slumbering till the trumpet ofthe archangel shall awaken them, stands the dull cypress, mourning in its sombre garments. Now as it is with nature, soit is with the race of man. Mankind have bravery and boldness; they must have their heroes to express their courage. Mankindhave some love to their fellow-creatures; they must have their fine philanthropists to live out mankind's philanthropy. Menhave their sorrows, they must have their weepers; they must have men of sorrows who have it for their avocation and theirbusiness, to weep, from the cradle to the grave to be ever weeping, not so much for themselves as for the woes of others,it may be I have some such here; I shall be happy to enlist their sympathies; and truly if I have none of that race, I shallboldly appeal to the whole mass of you, and I will bring before you causes of great grief; and when I bid you by the loveyou bear to man, and to his God, to begin to weep; if you have tears, these hard times will compel you to shed them now. Come,letme show you wherefore I have taken this my text, and why I have uttered this mournful language; and if your hearts benot as stolid as stone, sure there should be some tears shed this morning. For if I be not foolish in my utterances and faintin my speech, you will go home to your chambers to weep there. "Oh that my head were waters and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people."
I want your griefs this morning, first, for persons actually slain-"the slain of the daughter of our people;" and then I shall need your tears for those morally slain, "the slain of the daughter of our people."
I. To begin, then, with ACTUAL MURDER AND REAL BLOODSHED. My brethren, our hearts are sick nigh unto death with the terriblenews brought us post after post, telegraph after telegraph; we have read many letters of the Times, day after day, until wehave folded up that paper, and professed before God that we could read no more. Our spirits have been harrowed by the mostfearful and unexpected cruelty. We, perhaps, may not have been personally interested in the bloodshed, sofar as our own husbands, wives, brothers, and sisters have been concerned, but we have felt the tie of kindred very stronglywhen we have found our race so cruelly butchered in the land of the East. It is for us to-day humbly to confess our crime.The government of India has been a cruel government; it has much for which to appear before the bar of God. Its tortures-ifthe best evidence is to be believed-have been of the most inhuman kind; God forgive the men who have committed such crimesinthe British name. But those days are past. May God blot out the sin. We do not forget our own guilt; but an overwhelmingsense of the guilt of others, who have with such cold-hearted cruelty tormented men and women, may well excuse us if we donot dilate upon the subject.
Alas! alas, for our brethren there! They have died; alas for them! They have been slain by the sword of treachery, and traitorouslymurdered by men who swore allegiance. Alas for them! But, O ye soldiers, we weep not for you. Even when ye were tortured,ye had not that high dishonor to bear to which the other sex has been obliged to submit. O England! weep for thy daughterswith a bitter lamentation; let thine eyes run down with rivers of blood for them. Had they beencrushed within the folds of the hideous boa, or had the fangs of the tiger been red with their blood, happy would theirfate have been compared with the indignities they have endured! O Earth! thou hast beheld crimes which antiquity could notparallel; thou hast seen bestial lust gratified upon the purest and the best of mortals. God's fairest creatures stained;those loved ones, who could not brook the name of lust, given up to the embraces of incarnate devils! Weep, Britain, weep,weep forthy sons and for thy daughters! If thou art cold-hearted now, if thou readest the tale of infamy now without a tear, thouart no mother to them! Sure thine heart must have failed thee, and thou hast become less loving than thine own lions, andless tender than beasts of prey, if thou dost not weep for the maiden and the wife, Brethren, I am not straining history;I am not endeavoring to be pathetic where there is no pathos. No; my subject of itself is all pathos; it is my poor way ofspeakingthat doth spoil it. I have not to-day to act the orator's part, to garnish up that which was nothing before; I have notto magnify little griefs-rather I feel that all my utterances do but diminish the woe which every thoughtful man must feel.Oh, how have our hearts been harrowed, cut in pieces, molten in the fire! Agony hath seized upon us, and grief unutterable,when, day after day, our hopes have been disappointed, and we have heard that still the rebel rages in his fury, and stillwithdespotic might doth as he pleaseth with the sons and daughters, the husbands and the wives of England Weep, Christians,weep! And ye ask me of what avail shall be your weeping eye bidden you weep today, because the spirit of vengeance is gathering;Britain's wrath is stirred; a black cloud is hanging over the head of the mutinous Sepoys! Their fate shall be most dreadful,their doom most tremendous, when England shall smite the murderers, as justly she must. There must be Judicial punishmentenacted upon these men, so terrible that the earth shall tremble, and both the ears of him that heareth it shall tingle!I am inclined, if I can, to sprinkle some few cooling tears upon the fires of vengeance. No, no, we will not take vengeanceupon ourselves. "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord." Let not Britain's soldiers push their enemies to destruction,through a spirit of vengeance, as men, let them do it as the appointed executioners of the sentence of our laws. Accordingtothe civil code of every country under heaven, these men are condemned to die. Not as soldiers should we war with them,but as malefactors we must execute the law upon them. They have committed treason against government, and for that crime alonethe doom is death! But they are murderers, and rightly or wrongly, our law is, that the murderer must die the death. God musthave this enormous sin punished, and though we would feel no vengeance as Britons, yet, for the sake of government, God'sestablished government on earth, the ruler who beareth the sword must not now bear the sword in vain. Long have I heldthat war is an enormous crime; long have I regarded all battles as but murder on a large scale: but this time, I, a peacefulman, a follower of the peaceful Saviour, do propound war. No, it is not war that I propound, but a just and proper punishment.I will not aid and abet soldiers as warriors, but as executioners of a lawful sentence, which ought to be executedupon men, who, by the double crime of infamous debauchery, and fearful bloodshed, have brought upon themselves the banand curse of God, so that they must be punished, or truth and innocence can never walk this earth. As a rule I do not believein the utility of capital punishment, but the crime has been attended with all the horrid guilt of the cities of the plain,and is too bestial to be endured. But still, I say, I would cool down the vengeance of Britons, and therefore I would bidyouweep. Ye talk of vengeance, but ye know not the men with whom ye have to deal; many a post may come, and many a monthrun round, and many a year may pass before ye hear of victory over those fierce men. Be not too proud. England talked onceof her great deeds, and she hath since been humbled. She may yet again learn that she is not omnipotent. But ye people ofGod, weep, weep for this sin that hath broken loose, weep for this hell that hath found its way to earth; go to your chambersand cryout to God to stop this bloodshed. You are to be the saviours of your nation. Not on the bayonets of British soldiery,but on the prayers of British Christians, do we rest. Run to your houses, fall upon your knees, lament most bitterly, forthis desperate sin; and then cry to God to save! Remember, he heareth prayer-prayer moveth the arm of the Omnipotent. Letus proclaim a fast; let us gather a solemn assembly; let us cry mightily unto him; let us ask the God of armies to avengehimself; letus pray him so to send the light of the gospel into the land, that such a crime may be impossible a second time; and thistime, so to put it down, that it may never have an opportunity of breaking loose again. I know not whether our governmentwill proclaim a national fast; but certain I am it is time that every Christian should celebrate one in his own heart. I bidall of you with whom my word has one atom of respect, if my exhortation has one word of force, I do exhort you to spend specialtime in prayer just now. Oh! my friends, ye cannot hear the shrieks, ye have not seen the terror-stricken faces, ye havenot beheld the flying fugitives; but you may picture them in your imagination; and he must be accursed who does not pray toGod, and lift up his soul in earnest prayer, that he would be pleased now to put his shield between our fellow-subjects andtheir enemies. And you, especially, the representatives of divers congregations in various parts of this land, give unto Godnorest until he be pleased to bestir himself. Make this your cry: "O Lord our God arise, and let thine enemies be scattered,and let all them that hate thee become as the fat of rams." So shall God, through your prayers, haply, establish peace andvindicate justice, and "God, even our own God, shall bless us, and that right early."
II. But I have now a greater reason for your sorrow-a more disregarded, and yet more dreadful source of woe. If the firsttime we said it with plaintive voice, we must a second time say it yet more plaintively-"Oh that my head were waters, andmine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night," FOR THE MORALLY SLAIN of the daughter of my people. The oldadage is still true, "One-half of the world knows nothing about how the other half lives." A largeproportion of you professing Christians have been respectably brought up; you have never in your lives been the visitantsof the dens of infamy, you have never frequented the haunts of wickedness, and you know but very little of the sins of yourfellow creatures. Perhaps it is well that you should remain as ignorant as you are; for, where to be ignorant is to be freefrom temptation, It would be folly to be wise. But there are others who have been obliged to see the wickedness of their fellows;and a public teacher, especially, is bound not to speak from mere hearsay, but to know from authentic sources what isthe spirit of the times. It is our business to look with eagle eye through every part of this land, and see what crime isrampant-what kind of crime, and what sort of infamy. Ah, my friends, with all the advancement of piety in this land, withall the hopeful signs of better times, with all the sunlight of glory heralding the coming morn, with all the promises andwith all ourhopes, we are still obliged to bid you weep because sin aboundeth and iniquity is still mighty. Oh, how many of our sonsand daughters, of our friends and relatives, are slain by sin! Ye weep over battle-fields, ye shed tears on the plains ofBalaklava; there are worse battlefields than there, and worse deaths than those inflicted by the sword.
Ah, weep ye for the drunkenness of this land! How many thousands of our race reel from our sin-palaces into perdition! Oh, if the souls of departed drunkardscould be seen at this hour by the Christians of Britain, they would tremble, lift up their hands in sorrow, and begin to weep.My soul might be an everlasting Niobe, perpetually dropping showers of tears, if it might know the doom and the destructionbrought on them by that one demon, and by that one demononly! I am no enthusiast, I am no total abstainer.-I do not think the cure of England's drunkenness will come from thatquarter. I respect those who thus deny themselves, with a view to the good of others, and should be glad to believe that theyaccomplish their object. But though I am no total abstainer, I hate drunkenness as much as any man breathing, and have beenthe means of bringing many poor creatures to relinquish this beastial indulgence. We believe drunkenness to be an awful crimeanda horrid sin; we look on all its dreadful effects, and we stand prepared to go to war with it, and to fight side by sidewith abstainers, even though we may differ from them as to the mode of warfare. Oh! England, how many thousands of thy sonsare murdered every year by that accursed devil of drunkenness, that hath such sway over this land!
But there are other crimes too. Alas, for that crime of debauchery! What scenes hath the moon seen every night! Sweetly did she shine last evening; the meadows seemed as if they were silveredwith beauty when she shone upon them. But ah! what sins were transacted beneath her pale sway! Oh, God, thou only knowest:our hearts might be sickened, and we might indeed cry for "A lodge in some vast wilderness," had we seen what God beheld whenhe looked down from themoon-lit sky! Ye tell me that sins of that kind are common in the lower class of society. Alas, I know it; alas, how manya girl hath dashed herself into the river to take away her life, because she could not bear the infamy that was brought uponher! But lay not this to the poor; the infamy and sin of our streets begin not with them. It beginneth with the highest ranks-withwhat we call the noblest classes of society. Men that have defiled themselves and others will stand in our senates, andwalk among our peers; men whose characters are not reputable-it is a shame to speak even of the things that are done ofthem in secret-are received into the drawing rooms and into the parlors of the highest society, while the poor creature whohas been the victim of their passions is hooted and cast away! O Lord God, thou alone knowest the awful ravages that thissin hath made. Thy servant's lips can utter no more than this, he hath gone to the verge of his utterance, he feeleth thathe hath nofurther license in his speech, still he may well cry-"Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears,that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!" If ye have walked the hospital, if ye have seenthe refuges, if ye have talked with the inmates-and if ye know the gigantic spread of that enormous evil, ye may well sympathizewith me when I say, that at the thought of it my spirit is utterly cast down. I feel that I would rather die than live whilstsin thus reigns and iniquity thus spreads.
But are these the only evils? Are these the only demons that are devouring our people? Ah, would to God it were so. Behold,throughout this land, how are men falling by every sin, disguised as it is under the shape of pleasure. Have ye never, asfrom some distant journey ye have returned to your houses at midnight, seen the multitudes of people who are turning out ofcasinos, low theatres, and other houses of sin? I do not frequent those places, nor from earliest childhoodhave I ever trodden those floors, but, from the company that I have seen issuing from these dens, I could only lift upmy hands, and pray God to close such places; they seem to be the gates of hell, and their doors, as they very properly themselvessay, "Lead to the pit." Ah, may God be pleased to raise up many who shall warn this city, and bid Christian people by dayand night "for the slain of the daughter of our people!" Christians, never leave off weeping for men's sins and infamies.Thereare sins by day; God's own day, this day is defiled, is broken in pieces and trodden under foot. There are sins everymorning committed, and sins each night. If ye could see them ye might be never happy, if ye could walk in the midst of themand behold them with your eyes, if God would give you grace, ye might perpetually weep, for ye would always have cause forsorrow. "Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain ofthe daughterof my people."
But now I must just throw in something which will more particularly apply to you. Perhaps I have very few here who would indulgein open and known sin; perhaps most of you belong to the good and amiable class who have every kind of virtue, and of whomit must be said, "One thing thou lackest;" My heart never feels so grieved as at the sight of you. How often have I been entertainedmost courteously and hospitably, as the Lord's servant, in the houses of men and of womenwhose characters are supremely excellent, who have every virtue that could adorn a Christian, except faith in the LordJesus Christ; who might be held up as the very mirrors and patterns to be imitated by others. How has my heart grieved whenI have thought of these, still undecided, still godless, prayerless and Christless. I have many of you in this congregationto-day-I could not put my finger upon one solitary fault in your character, you are scrupulously correct in your morals-Alas,alas,alas for you, that you should still be dead in trespasses and sins, because you have not been renewed by divine grace!So lovely, and yet without faith; so beautiful, so admirable, and yet not converted. O God, when drunkards die, when swearersperish, when harlots and seducers sink to the fate they have earned, we may well weep for such sinners; but when these whohave walked in our midst and have almost been acknowledged as believers, are cast away because they leek the one thing needful,itseems enough to make angels weep. O members of churches, ye may well take up the cry of Jeremiah when ye remember whatmultitudes of these you have in your midst-men who have a name to live and are dead: and others, who though they profess notto be Christians, are almost persuaded to obey their Lord and Master, but are yet not partakers of the divine life of God.
But now I shall want, if I can, to press this pathetic subject a little further upon your minds. In the day when Jeremiahwept this lamentation with an exceeding loud and bitter cry, Jerusalem was in all her mirth and merriment. Jeremiah was asad man in the midst of a multitude of merry makers; he told them that Jerusalem should be destroyed, that their temple shouldbecome a heap, and Nebuchadnezzar should lay it with the ground. They laughed him to scorn; they mockedhim. Still the viol and the dance were only to be seen. Do you not picture that brave old man, for he was bravely plaintive,sitting down in the courts of the Temple? And though as yet the pillars were unfallen, and the golden roof was yet unstained,he lifted up his hands and pictured to himself this scene of Jerusalem's Temple burned with fire, her women and her childrencarried away captive, and her sons given to the sword. And when he pictured this, he did, as it were, in spirit set himselfdown upon one of the broken pillars of the Temple, and there, in the midst of desolation which was not as yet-but whichfaith, the evidence of things not seen, did picture to him-cry, "Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain oftears." And now, to-day, here are many of you masquers and merry makers in this ball of life, ye are here merry and glad to-day,and ye marvel that I should talk of you as persons for whom we ought to weep. "Weep ye for me!" you say; "I am in health,I amin riches, I am enjoying life; why weep for me? I need none of your sentimental weeping!" Ah, but we weep because we foreseethe future. If you could live here always, we might not, perhaps, weep for you; but we, by the eye of faith, look forwardto the time when the pillars of heaven must totter, when this earth must shake, when death must give up its prey, when thegreat white throne must be set in the clouds of heaven, and the thunders and lightnings of Jehovah shall be launched in armies,and the angels of God shall be marshalled in their ranks, to swell the pomp of the grand assize-we look forward to thathour, and by faith we see you standing before the Judge; we see his eye sternly fixed on you, we hear him read the book; wemark your tottering knees, whilst sentence after sentence of thundering wrath strikes on your appalled ear; we think we seeyour blanched countenances; we mark your terror beyond all description, when he cries, "Depart, ye cursed!" We hear your shrieks;we hear you cry, "Rocks hide us; mountains on us fall!" We see the angel with fiery brand pursuing you, we hear your lastunutterable shriek of woe as you descend into the pit of hell-and we ask you if you could see this as we see it, would youwonder that at the thought of your destruction we are prepared to weep? "Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes were afountain of tears that I might weep" over you who will not stand in the judgment, but must be driven away like chaff intotheunquenchable fire! And by the eye of faith we look further than that; we look into the grim and awful future: our faithlooks through the gate of iron bound with adamant; we see the place of the condemned, our ear, opened by faith, hears "Thesullen groans, and hollow moans, and shrieks of tortured ghosts!" Our eye anointed with heavenly eye salve sees the worm thatnever dieth, it beholds the fire that never can be quenched, and sees you writhing in the flame! O professors, if ye believednotin the wrath to come, and in hell eternal, I should not wonder that ye were unmoved by such a thought as this. But ifye believe what your Saviour said when he declared that he would destroy both body and soul in hell, I must wonder that yecould endure the thought without weeping for your fellow-creatures who are going there. If I saw mine enemy marching intothe flames, I would rush between him and the fire and seek to preserve him; and will you see men and women marching on ina mad careerof vice and sin, well aware that "the wages of sin is death," and will you not interpose so much as a tear? What! areyou more brutal than the beast, more stolid than the stone! It must be so, if the thought of the unutterable torment of hell,doth not draw tears from your eyes and prayer from your hearts. Oh, if to-day some strong archangel could unbolt the gatesof hell, and for a solitary second permit the voice of wailing and weeping to come up to our ears; Oh, how should we grieve!Eachman would put his hand upon his loins and walk this earth in terror. That shriek might make each hair stand on an endupon our heads, and then make us roll ourselves in the dust for anguish and woe-
"Oh, doleful state of dark despair,
When God has far removed,
And fixed their dreadful station where
They must not taste his love."
Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep for some of you that are going there thisday.
Remember, again, O Christian, that those for whom we ask you to weep this day are persons who have had great privileges, andconsequently, if lost, must expect greater punishment. I do not to-day ask your sympathies for men in foreign lands, I shallnot bid you weep for Hottentots or Mahomedans though ye might weep for them, and ye have goodly cause to do so-but I ask thisday your tears for the slain of the daughter of your own people. Oh! what multitudes of heathens wehave in all our places of worship! what multitudes of unconverted persons in all the pews of the places where we usuallyassemble to worship God; and I may add, what hundreds we have here who are without God, without Christ, without hope in theworld. And these are not like Hottentots who have not heard the Word: they have heard it, and they have rejected it. Manyof you, when you die, cannot plead, as an excuse, that you did not know your duty; you heard it plainly preached to you, youheardit in every corner of the streets, you had the book of God in your houses. You cannot say that you did not know what youmust do to be saved. You read the Bible, you understand salvation-many of you are deeply taught in the theory of salvation;when ye perish, your blood must be on your own head, and the Master may well cry over you to-day, "Woe unto thee, Bethsaida,woe unto thee Chorazin! For if the mighty works that were done in thee, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repentedlong ago in sackcloth and ashes." I wonder at myself this day; I hate my eyes, I feel as if I could pluck them from theirsockets now, because they will not weep as I desire, over poor souls who are perishing! How many have I among you whom I loveand who love me! We are no strangers to one another, we could not live at a distance from each other, our hearts have beenjoined together long and firmly. Ye have stood by me in the hour of tribulation, ye have listened to the Word, ye have beenpleased with it; I bear you witness that if you could pluck out your eyes for me you would do it. And yet I know thereare many of you true lovers of God's Word in appearance, and certainly great lovers of God's servant, but alas for you, thatyou should still be in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity! Alas, my sister, I can weep for thee! Woe, woe,my brother, I can weep for thee! we have met together in God's house, we have prayed together, and yet we must be sundered.Shepherd, some of thy flock will perish! O sheep of my pasture, people of my care, must I have that horrid thought uponme, that I must lose you? Must we, at the day of judgment, say farewell for ever? Must I bear my witness against you? I shallbe honest; I have dealt faithfully with your souls. God is my witness, I have often preached in weakness; often have I hadto groan before him that I have not preached as I could desire; but I have never preached insincerely. Nobody will ever daretoaccuse me of dishonesty in this respect; not one of your smiles have I ever courted. I have never dreaded your frowns;I have been in weariness oftentimes, when I should have rested, preaching God's Word. But what of that? That were nothing;only this much, there is some responsibility resting upon you. And remember, that to perish under the sound of the Gospelis to perish more terribly than anywhere else. But, my hearers, must that be your lot? And must I be witness against you inthe day ofjudgment? I pray God it may not be so; I beseech the Master, that he may spare us each such a fate as that.
And now, dear friends I have one word to add before I leave this point. Some of you need not look round on this congregationto find cause for weeping. My pious brethren and sisters, you have cause enough to weep in your own families. Ah, mother!I know thy griefs; thou hast had cause to cry to God with weeping eyes for many a mournful hour, because of thy son; thineoffspring hath turned against thee; and he that came forth of thee has despised his mother's God. Father,thou hast carefully brought up thy daughter; thou has nourished her when she was young, and taken her fondly in thinearms; she was the delight of thy life, yet she hath sinned against thee and against God. Many of you have sons and daughtersthat you often mention in your prayers, but never with hope. You have often thought that God has said of your son, "Ephraimis given to idols; let him alone;" the child of your affection has become an adder stinging your heart! Oh, then weep, I beseechyou. Parents, do not leave off weeping for your children; do not become hardened towards them, sinners though they be;it may be that God may yet bring them to himself. It was but last church meeting that we received into our communion a youngfriend who was educated and brought up by a pious minister in Colchester. She had been there many years, and when she cameaway to London the minister said to her, "Now, my girl, I have prayed for you hundreds of times, and I have done all I canwith you;your heart is as hard as a stone; I must leave you with God!" That broke her heart; she is now converted to Jesus. Howmany sons and daughters have made their parents feel the same! "There," they have said, "I must leave you, I cannot do more."But in saying that, they have not meant that they would leave them unwept for, but they have thought within themselves, thatif they were damned, they would follow them weeping to the very gates of hell, if by tears they could decoy them into heaven.Howcan a man be a Christian, and not love his offspring? How can a man be a believer in Jesus Christ, and yet have a coldand hard heart in the things of the kingdom, towards his children? I have heard of ministers of a certain sect, and professorsof a certain class, who have despised family prayer, who have laughed at family godliness and thought nothing of it. I cannotunderstand how the men can know as much as they do about the gospel, and yet have so little of the spirit of it. I pray God,deliver you and deliver me from anything like that. No, it is our business to train up our children in the fear of theLord; and though we cannot give them grace, it is ours to pray to the God who can give it; and in answer to our many supplications,he will not turn us away, but he will be pleased to take notice of our prayers and to regard our sighs.
And now, Christian mourners, I have given you work enough; may God the Holy Spirit enable you to do it. Let me exhort you,yet once again, to weep. Do you need a copy? Behold your Master; he has come to the brow of the hill; he sees Jerusalem lyingon the hill opposite to him, he looks down upon it, as he sees it there-beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth-insteadof feeling the rapture of some artist who surveys the ramparts of a strong city, and marks theposition of some magnificent tower in the midst of glorious scenery, he bursts out and he cries, "O Jerusalem, JerusalemI how often would I have gathered thy children together as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, but ye would not.Behold, your house is left unto you desolate." Go ye now your ways, and as ye stand on any of the hills around, and beheldthis Behemoth city! lying in the valley, say; "O London, London! how great thy guilt. Oh! that the Master would gather theeunderhis wing, and make thee his city, the joy of the whole earth! O London, London! full of privileges, and full of sin, exaltedto heaven by the gospel, thou shalt be cast down to hell by thy rejection of it!" And then, when ye have wept over London,go and weep over the street in which you live, as you see the sabbath broken, and God's laws trampled upon, and men's bodiesprofaned-go ye and weep! Weep, for the court in which you live in your humble poverty, weep for the square in which you livein your magnificent wealth; weep for the humbler street in which you live in competence, weep for your neighbors and yourfriends, lest any of them, having lived godless, may die godless! Then go to your house, weep for your family, for your servants,for your husband, for your wife, for your children. Weep, weep, cease not weeping, till God hath renewed them by his Spirit.And if you have any friends with whom you sinned in your past life, be earnest for their salvation. George Whitfield saidthere were many young men with whom he played at cards, in his lifetime, and spent hours in wasting his time when he oughtto have been about other business; and when he was converted, his first thought was," I must by God's grace have these convertedtoo." And he never rested, till he could say, that he did not know of one of them, a companion of his guilt, who was not nowa companion with him in the tribulation of the gospel. Oh, let it be so with you! Nor let your exertions end in tears;mere weeping will do nothing without action. Get you on your feet, ye that have voices and might, go forth and preachthe gospel, preach it in every street and lane of this huge city; ye that have wealth, go forth and spend it for the poor,and sick, and needy, and dying, the uneducated, the unenlightened; ye that have time, go forth and spend it in deeds of goodness;ye that have power in prayer, go forth and pray, ye that can handle the pen, go forth and write down iniquity-every one tohispost, every one of you to your gun in this day of battle, now for God and for his truth; for God and for the right; letevery one of us why knows the Lord seek to fight under his banner! O God, without whom all our exertions are vain, come nowand stir up thy church to greater diligence and more affectionate earnestness, that we may not have in future such cause toweep as we have this day! Sinners, believe on the Lord Jesus; he hath died, look to him and live, and God the Almighty blessyou!To God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, be glory for ever and ever.