Sermon 241. Predestination and Calling
Delivered on Sabbath Morning, March 6th, 1859, by the
REV. C.H. SPURGEON
at the Music Hall, Royal Surrey Gardens.
"Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called."-Romans 8:30
THE GREAT BOOK OF GOD'S DECREES is fast closed against the curiosity of man. Vain man would be wise; he would break the sevenseals thereof, and read the mysteries of eternity. But this cannot be; the time has not yet come when the book shall be opened,and even then the seals shall not be broken by mortal hand, but it shall be said, "The lion of the tribe of Judah hath prevailedto open the book and break the seven seals thereof."
Eternal Father, who shall look
Into thy secret will?
None but the Lamb shall take the book,
And open every seal.
None but he shall ever unroll that sacred record and read it to the assembled world. How then am I to know whether I am predestinatedby God unto eternal life or not? It is a question in which my eternal interests are involved; am I among that unhappy numberwho shall be left to live in sin and reap the due reward of their iniquity; or do I belong to that goodly company, who albeitthat they have sinned shall nevertheless be washed in the blood of Christ, and shall inwhite robes walk the golden streets of paradise? Until this question be answered my heart cannot rest, for I am intenselyanxious about it. My eternal destiny infinitely more concerns me than all the affairs of time. Tell me, oh, tell me, if yeknow, seers and prophets, is my name recorded in that book of life? Am I one of those who are ordained unto eternal life,or am I to be left to follow my own lusts and passions, and to destroy my own soul? Oh! man, there is an answer to thy inquiry;thebook cannot be opened, but God himself hath published many a page thereof. He hath not published the page whereon theactual names of the redeemed are written; but that page of the sacred decree whereon their character is recorded is published in his Word, and shall be proclaimed to thee this day. The sacred record of God's hand is this daypublished everywhere under heaven, and he that hath an ear let him hear what the Spirit saith unto him. O my hearer, by thyname I know theenot, and by thy name God's Word doth not declare thee, but by thy character thou mayest read thy name; and if thou hastbeen a partaker of the calling which is mentioned in the text, then mayest thou conclude beyond a doubt that thou art amongthe predestinated-"For whom he did predestinate, them he also called." And if thou be called, it follows as a natural inferencethou art predestinated.
Now, in considering this solemn subject, let me remark that there are two kinds of callings mentioned in the Word of God.The first is the general call, which is in the gospel sincerely given to everyone that heareth the word. The duty of the minister is to call souls to Christ,he is to make no distinction whatever-"Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." The trumpet of the gospel sounds aloud to every man in ourcongregations-"Ho, everyone that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea,come, buy wine and milk without money and without price." "Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of man" (Prov. 8:4). This call is sincere on God's part; but man by nature is so opposed to God, that this call is never effectual, for mandisregards it, turns his back upon it, and goes his way, caring for none of these things. But mark, although this call berejected, man is without excuse in the rejection; the universal call has in it such authority, that the man who will notobey it shall be without excuse in the day of judgment. When thou art commanded to believe and repent, when thou art exhortedto flee from the wrath to come, the sin lies on thy own head if thou dost despise the exhortation, and reject the commandment.And this solemn text drops an awful warning: "How shall ye escape, if ye neglect so great salvation." But I repeat it, thisuniversal call is rejected by man; it is a call, but it is not a attended with divine force and energy of the Holy Spiritin such a degree as to make it an unconquerable call, consequently men perish, even though they have the universal call ofthe gospel ringing in their ears. The bell of God's house rings every day, sinners hear it, but they put their fingers intheir ears, and go their way, one to his farm, and another to his merchandise, and though they are bidden and are called tothewedding (Luke 14:16,17,18), yet they will not come, and by not coming they incur God's wrath, and he declareth of such,-"None of those men which werebidden shall taste of my supper" (Luke 14:24). The call of our text is of a different kind; it is not a universal call, it is a special, particular, personal, discriminating,efficacious, unconquerable, call. This call is sent to the predestinated, and to them only; they by grace hear the call, obeyit, and receive it. These are they who can nowsay, "Draw us, and we will run after thee."
In preaching of this call this morning, I shall divide my sermon into three brief parts.-First, I shall give illustrations of the call; second, we shall come to examine whether we have been called; and then third, what delightful consequences flow therefrom. Illustration, examination, consolation.
I. First, then, for ILLUSTRATION. In illustrating the effectual call of grace, which is given to the predestinated ones, Imust first use the picture of Lazarus. See you that stone rolled at the mouth of the sepulchre? Much need is there for thestone that it should be well secured, for within the sepulchre there is a putrid corpse. The sister of that corrupt body standsat the side of the tomb, and she says, "Lord, by this time he stinketh, for he hath been dead fourdays." This is the voice of reason and of nature. Martha is correct; but by Martha's side there stands a man who, despiteall his lowliness, is very God of very God. "Roll ye away the stone," saith he, and it is done; and now, listen to him; hecries, "Lazarus, come forth!" that cry is directed to a mass of putridity, to a body that has been dead four days, and inwhich the worms have already held carnival; but, strange to say, from that tomb there comes a living man; that mass of corruptionhas been quickened into life, and out he comes, wrapped about with graveclothes, and having a napkin about his head. "Loosehim and let him go," saith the Redeemer; and then he walks in all the liberty of life. The effectual call of grace is preciselysimilar; the sinner is dead in sin; he is not only in sin but dead in sin, without any power whatever to give to himself the life of grace. Nay, he is not only dead, but he is corrupt; hislusts, like the worms, have crept into him, a foulstench riseth up into the nostrils of justice, God abhorreth him, and justice crieth, "Bury the dead out of my sight,cast it into the fire, let it be consumed." Sovereign Mercy comes, and there lies this unconscious, lifeless mass of sin;Sovereign Grace cries, either by the minister, or else directly without any agency, by the Spirit of God, "come forth!" andthat man lives. Does he contribute anything to his new life? Not he; his life is given solely by God. He was dead, absolutelydead,rotten in his sin; the life is given when the call comes, and, in obedience to the call, the sinner comes forth from thegrave of his lust, begins to live a new life, even the life eternal, which Christ gives to his sheep.
"Well," cries one, "but what are the words which Christ uses when he calls a sinner from death?" Why the Lord may use anywords. It was not long ago there came unto this hall, a man who was without God and without Christ, and the simple readingof the hymn-
"Jesus lover of my soul,"
was the means of his quickening. He said within himself, "Does Jesus love me? then I must love him," and he was quickenedin that selfsame hour. The words which Jesus uses are various in different cases. I trust that even while I am speaking thismorning, Christ may speak with me, and some word that may fall from my lips, unpremeditated and almost without design, shallbe sent of God as a message of life unto some dead and corrupt heart here, and some man who has lived insin hitherto, shall now live to righteousness, and live to Christ. That is the first illustration I will give you of whatis meant by effectual calling. It finds the sinner dead, it gives him life, and he obeys the call of life and lives.
But let us consider a second phase of it. You will remember while the sinner is dead in sin, he is alive enough so far asany opposition to God may be concerned. He is powerless to obey, but he is mighty enough to resist the call of divine grace.I may illustrate it in the case of Saul of Tarsus: this proud Pharisee abhors the Lord Jesus Christ; he has seized upon everyfollower of Jesus who comes within his grasp; he has haled men and women to prison; with the avidity ofa miser who hunts after gold, he has hunted after the precious life of Christ's disciple, and having exhausted his preyin Jerusalem, he seeks letters and goes off to Damascus upon the same bloody errand. Speak to him on the road, send out theapostle Peter to him, let Peter say, "Saul, why dost thou oppose Christ? The time shall come when thou shalt yet be his disciple."Paul would turn round and laugh him to scorn-"Get thee gone thou fisherman, get thee gone-I a disciple of thatimposter Jesus of Nazareth! Look here, this is my confession of faith; here will I hale thy brothers and thy sisters toprison, and beat them in the synagogue and compel them to blaspheme and even hunt them to death, for my breath is threatening,and my heart is as fire against Christ." Such a scene did not occur, but had there been any remonstrance given by men youmay easily conceive that such would have been Saul's answer. But Christ determined that he would call the man. Oh, what anenterprise! Stop HIM? Why he is going fast onward in his mad career. But lo, a light shines round about him and he fallsto the ground, and he hears a voice crying, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me; it is hard for thee to kick against thepricks." Saul's eyes are filled with tears, and then again with scales of darkness, and he cries, "Who art thou?" and a voicecalls, "I am Jesus, whom thou persecutest." It is not many minutes before he begins to feel his sin in having persecuted Jesus,nor many hours ere he receives the assurance of his pardon, and not many days ere he who persecuted Christ stands up topreach with vehemence and eloquence unparalleled, the very cause which he once trod beneath his feet. See what effectual callingcan do. If God should choose this morning to call the hardest-hearted wretch within hearing of the gospel, he must obey. LetGod call-a man may resist, but he cannot resist effectually. Down thou shalt come, sinner, if God cries down; thereis no standing when he would have thee fall. And mark, every man that is saved, is always saved by an overcoming callwhich he cannot withstand; he may resist it for a time, but he cannot resist so as to overcome it, he must give way, he must yield when God speaks. If he says, "Let there be light," the impenetrable darkness gives way to light; if he says, "Let therebe grace," unutterable sin gives way, and the hardest-hearted sinner melts before the fire of effectual calling.
I have thus illustrated the call in two ways, by the state of the sinner in his sin, and by the omnipotence which overwhelmsthe resistance which he offers. And now another case. The effectual call may be illustrated in its sovereignty by the case of Zaccheus. Christ is entering into Jericho to preach. There is a publican living in it, who is a hard, griping,grasping, miserly extortioner. Jesus Christ is coming in to call some one, for it is written he must abidein some man's house. Would you believe it, that the man whom Christ intends to call is the worst man in Jericho-the extortioner?He is a little short fellow, and he cannot see Christ, though he has a great curiosity to look at him; so he runs before thecrowd and climbs up a sycamore tree, and thinking himself quite safe amid the thick foliage, he waits with eager expectationto see this wonderful man who had turned the world upside down. Little did he think that he was to turn him also. TheSaviour walks along preaching and talking with the people until he comes under the sycamore tree, then lifting up hiseyes, he cries-"Zaccheus, make haste and come down, for today I must abide in thy house." The shot took effect, the bird fell,down came Zaccheus, invited the Saviour to his house, and proved that he was really called not by the voice merely but bygrace itself, for he said, "Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give unto the poor, and if I have taken anything from anyman byfalse accusation, I restore unto him fourfold;" and Jesus said, "This day is salvation come unto thy house." Now why callZaccheus? There were many better men in the city than he. Why call him? Simply because the call of God comes to unworthy sinners. Thereis nothing in man that can deserve this call; nothing in the best of men that can invite it; but God quickeneth whom he will,and when he sends that call, though it come to the vilest of the vile, down they come speedily and swiftly;they come down from the tree of their sin, and fall prostrate in penitence at the feet of Jesus Christ.
But now to illustrate this call in its effects, we remind you that Abraham is another remarkable instance of effectual calling."Now the Lord had said unto Abraham, get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, untoa land that I will show thee," and "by faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into place which he should after receivefor an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went." Ah! poor Abraham, as theworld would have had it, what a trial his call cost him! He was happy enough in the bosom of his father's household, butidolatry crept into it, and when God called Abraham, he called him alone and blessed him out of Ur of the Chaldees, and saidto him, "Go forth, Abraham!" and he went forth, not knowing whither he went. Now, when effectual calling comes into a houseand singles out a man, that man will be compelled to go forth without the camp, bearing Christ's reproach. He must come outfromhis very dearest friends, from all his old acquaintances, from those friends with whom he used to drink, and swear, andtake pleasure; he must go straight away from them all, to follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. What a trial to Abraham'sfaith, when he had to leave all that was so dear to him, and go he knew not whither! And yet God had a goodly land for him,and intended greatly to bless him. Man! if thou art called, if thou art called truly, there will be a going out, and a goingoutalone. Perhaps some of God's professed people will leave you; you will have to go without a solitary friend,-maybe youwill even be deserted by Sarah herself, and you may be a stranger in a strange land, a solitary wanderer, as all your fatherswere. Ah! but if it be an effectual call, and if salvation shall be the result thereof, what matters it though thou dost goto heaven alone? Better to be a solitary pilgrim to bliss, than one of the thousands who throng the road to hell.
I will have one more illustration. When effectual calling comes to a man, at first he may not know that it is effectual calling.You remember the case of Samuel; the Lord called Samuel, and he arose and went to Eli, and he said, "Here am I, for thou calledstme." Eli said, "I called not, lie down again. And he went and lay down." The second time the Lord called him, and said, "Samuel,Samuel," and he arose again, and went to Eli, and said, "Here am I, for thou didst callme," and then it was that Eli, not Samuel, first of all perceived that the Lord had called the child. And when Samuelknew it was the Lord, he said, "Speak; for thy servant heareth." When the work of grace begins in the heart, the man is notalways clear that it is God's work; he is impressed under the minister, and perhaps he is rather more occupied with the impressionthan with the agent of the impression; he says, "I know not how it is, but I have been called; Eli, the minister, has calledme." And perhaps he goes to Eli to ask what he wants with him. "Surely," said he, "the minister knew me, and spoke somethingpersonally to me, because he knew my case." And he goes to Eli, and it is not till afterwards, perhaps, that he finds thatEli had nothing to do with the impression, but that the Lord had called him. I know this-I believe God was at work with myheart for years before I knew anything about him. I knew there was a work; I knew I prayed, and cried, and groaned for mercy,but I did not know that was the Lord's work; I half thought it was my own. I did not know till afterwards, when I wasled to know Christ as all my salvation, and all my desire, that the Lord had called the child, for this could not have been the result of nature, it must have been the effect of grace. I think Imay say to those who are the beginners in the divine life, so long as your call is real, rest assured it is divine. If itis a call that will suit the remarks which I am about togive you in the second part of the discourse, even though you may have thought that God's hand is not in it, rest assuredthat it is, for nature could never produce effectual calling. If the call be effectual, and you are brought out and broughtin-brought out of sin and brought to Christ, brought out of death into life, and out of slavery into liberty, then, thoughthou canst not see God's hand in it, yet it is there.
II. I have thus illustrated effectual calling. And now as a matter of EXAMINATION let each man judge himself by certain characteristicsof heavenly calling which I am about to mention. If in your Bible you turn to 2 Timothy 1:9, you will read these words-"Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling." Now here is the first touchstone by whichwe may try our calling-many are called but few are chosen, because there are many kinds of call, but the true call, andthat only, answers to the description of the text. It is "an holy calling, not according to our works, but according tohis own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began." This calling forbids all trust in ourown doings and conducts us to Christ alone for salvation, but it afterwards purges us from dead works to serve the livingand true God. If you are living in sin, you are not called; if you can still continue as you were before your pretended conversion,then it is no conversion at all; that man who is called in his drunkenness, will forsake his drunkenness; men may be calledin the midst of sin, but they will not continue in it any longer. Saul was anointed to be king when he was seeking his father'sasses; and many a man has been called when he has been seeking his own lust, but he will leave the asses, and leave the lust,when once he is called. Now, by this shall ye know whether ye be called of God or not. If ye continue in sin, if ye walkaccording to the course of this world, according to the spirit that worketh in the children of disobedience, then areye still dead in your trespasses and your sins; but as he that hath called you is holy, so must ye be holy. Can ye say, "Lord,thou knowest all things, thou knowest that I desire to keep all thy commandments, and to walk blamelessly in thy sight. Iknow that my obedience cannot save me, but I long to obey. There is nothing that pains me so much as sin; I desire to be quitandrid of it; Lord help me to be holy"? Is that the panting of thy heart? Is that the tenor of thy life towards God, andtowards his law? Then, beloved, I have reason to hope that thou hast been called of God, for it is a holy calling wherewithGod doth call his people.
Another text. In Philippians 3:13 and 14 you find these words. "Forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those which are before, Ipress towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." Is then your calling a high calling, has it lifted up your heart, and set it upon heavenlythings? Has it lifted up your hopes, to hope no longer for things that are on earth, but for things that are above? Has itlifted up yourtastes, so that they are no longer grovelling, but you choose the things that are of God? Has it lifted up the constanttenor of your life, so that you spend your life with God in prayer, in praise, and in thanksgiving, and can no longer be satisfiedwith the low and mean pursuits which you followed in the days of your ignorance? Recollect, if you are truly called it isa high calling, a calling from on high, and a calling that lifts up your heart, and raises it to the high things of God,eternity, heaven, and holiness. In Hebrews 3:1, you find this sentence. "Holy brethren partakers of the heavenly calling." Here is another test. Heavenly calling means a call from heaven. Have you been called, not of man but of God? Can you now detect in your calling, the hand of God, and the voice ofGod? If man alone call thee, thou art uncalled. Is thy calling of God? and is it a call to heaven as well as from heaven? Can you heartily say that you can never restsatisfied till you
-"behold his face
And never, never sin,
But from the rivers of his grace,
Drink endless pleasures in."
Man, unless thou art a stranger here, and heaven is thy home, thou hast not been called with a heavenly calling, for thosewho have been so called, declare that they look for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God, and theythemselves are strangers and pilgrims upon the earth.
There is another test. Let me remind you, that there is a passage in scripture which may tend very much to your edification,and help you in your examination. Those who are called, are men who before the calling, groaned in sin. What says Christ?-"Icame not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." Now, if I cannot say the first things because of diffidence, thoughthey be true, yet can I say this, that I feel myself to be a sinner, that I loathe my sinnership,that I detest my iniquity, that I feel I deserve the wrath of God on account of my transgressions? If so, then I havea hope that I may be among the called host whom God has predestinated. He has called not the righteous but sinners to repentance.Self-righteous man, I can tell thee in the tick of a clock, whether thou hast any evidence of election. I tell thee-No; Christnever called the righteous; and if he has not called thee, and if he never does call thee, thou art not elect, and thouand thy self-righteousness must be subject to the wrath of God, and cast away eternally. Only the sinner, the awakenedsinner, can be at all assured that he has been called; and even he, as he gets older in grace, must look for those highermarks of the high heavenly and holy calling in Christ Jesus.
As a further test,-keeping close to scripture this morning, for when we are dealing with our own state before God there isnothing like giving the very words of scripture,-we are told in the first epistle of Peter, the second chapter, and the ninthverse, that God hath called us out of darkness into marvelous light. Is that your call? Were you once darkness in regard toChrist; and has marvelous light manifested to you a marvelous Redeemer, marvelously strong to save?Say soul, canst thou honestly declare that thy past life was darkness and that thy present state is light in the Lord?"For ye were sometime darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord; walk as children of the light." That man is not called whocannot look back upon darkness, ignorance, and sin, and who cannot now say, that he knows more than he did know, and enjoysat times the light of knowledge, and the comfortable light of God's countenance.
Yet again. Another test of calling is to be found in Galatians, the fifth chapter, and the fifteenth verse. "Brethren, yehave been called into liberty." Let me ask myself again this question, Have the fetters of my sin been broken off, and amI God's free man? Have the manacles of justice been snapped, and am I delivered-set free by him who is the great ransomerof spirits? The slave is not called. It is the free man that has been brought out of Egypt, who proves thathe has been called of God and is precious to the heart of the Most High.
And yet once more, another precious means of test in the first of Corinthians, the first chapter, and the ninth verse. "Heis faithful by whom ye were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord." Do I have fellowship with Christ?do I converse with him, commune with him? Do I suffer with him, suffer for him? Do I sympathize with him in his objects and aims? Do I love what he loves; do I hate what he hates? Can I bear his reproach;can Icarry his cross; do I tread in his steps; do I serve his cause, and is it my grandest hope that I shall see his kingdomcome, that I shall sit upon his throne, and reign with him? If so, then am I called with the effectual calling, which is thework of God's grace, and is the sure sign of my predestination.
Let me say now, before I turn from this point, that it is possible for a man to know whether God has called him or not, andhe may know it too beyond a doubt. He may know it as surely as if he read it with his own eyes; nay, he may know it more surelythan that, for if I read a thing with my eyes, even my eyes may deceive me, the testimony of sense may be false, but the testimony of the Spirit must be true. We have the witness of the Spirit within, bearing witnesswith our spirits that we are born of God. There is such a thing on earth as an infallible assurance of our election. Leta man once get that, and it will anoint his head with fresh oil, it will clothe him with the white garment of praise, andput the song of the angel into his mouth. Happy, happy man! who is fully assured of his interest in the covenant of grace,in the blood of atonement, and in the glories of heaven! Such men there are here this very day. Let them "rejoice in the Lordalway,and again I say rejoice."
What would some of you give if you could arrive at this assurance? Mark, if you anxiously desire to know, you may know. Ifyour heart pants to read its title clear it shall do so ere long. No man ever desired Christ in his heart with a living andlonging desire, who did not find him sooner or later. If thou hast a desire, God has given it thee. If thou pantest, and criest,and groanest after Christ, even this is his gift; bless him for it. Thank him for little grace, andask him for great grace. He has given thee hope, ask for faith; and when he gives thee faith, ask for assurance; and whenthou gettest assurance, ask for full assurance; and when thou hast obtained full assurance, ask for enjoyment; and when thouhast enjoyment, ask for glory itself; and he shall surely give it thee in his own appointed season.
III. I now come to finish up with CONSOLATION. Is there anything here that can console me? Oh, yes, rivers of consolationflow from my calling. For, first, if I am called then I am predestinated, there is no doubt about it. The great scheme ofsalvation is like those chains which we sometimes see at horse-ferries. There is a chain on this side of the river fixed intoa staple, and the same chain is fixed into a staple at the other side, but the greater part of the chain isfor the most part under water, and you cannot see it: you only see it as the boat moves on, and as the chain is drawnout of the water by the force that propels the boat. If today I am enabled to say I am called, then my boat is like the ferry-boatin the middle of the stream. I can see that part of the chain, which is named "calling," but blessed be God, that is joinedto the side that is called "election," and I may be also quite clear that it is joined on to the other side, the gloriousendof "glorification." If I be called I must have been elected, and I need not doubt that. God never tantalized a man bycalling him by grace effectually, unless he had written that man's name in the Lamb's book of life. Oh, what a glorious doctrineis that of election, when a man can see himself to be elect. One of the reasons why many men kick against it is this, theyare afraid it hurts them. I never knew a man yet, who had a reason to believe that he himself was chosen of God, who hatedthedoctrine of election. Men hate election just as thieves hate Chubb's patent locks; because they cannot get at the treasurethemselves, they therefore hate the guard which protects it. Now election shuts up the precious treasury of God's covenantblessings for his children-for penitents, for seeking sinners. These men will not repent, will not believe; they will notgo God's way, and then they grumble and growl, and fret, and fume, because God has locked the treasure up against them. Leta manonce believe that all the treasure within is his, and then the stouter the bolt, and the surer the lock, the better forhim. Oh, how sweet it is to believe our names were on Jehovah's heart, and graven on Jesus' hands before the universe hada being! May not this electrify a man of joy, and make him dance for very mirth?
Chosen of God ere time began.
Come on, slanderers! rail on as pleases you. Come on thou world in arms! Cataracts of trouble descend if you will, and you,ye floods of affliction, roll if so it be ordained, for God has written my name in the book of life. Firm as this rock I stand,though nature reels and all things pass away. What consolation then to be called: for if I am called, then I am predestinated.Come let us at the sovereignty which has called us, and let us remember the words of the apostle,"For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world,to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea,and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: that no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are yeinChrist Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: that, accordingas it is written, he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord."
A second consolation is drawn from the grand truth, that if a man be called he will certainly be saved at last. To prove that,however, I will refer you to the express words of scripture: Romans 11:29-"The gifts and calling of God are without repentance." He never repents of what he gives, nor of what he calls. And indeedthis is proved by the very chapter out of which we have taken our text. "Whom he did predestinate, them he also called; andwhom he called, them healso justified; and whom he justified, them he also glorified," everyone of them. Now, believer, thou mayest be very poor,and very sick, and very much unknown and despised, but sit thee down and review thy calling this morning, and the consequencesthat flow from it. As sure as thou art God's called child today, thy poverty shall soon be at an end, and thou shalt be richto all the intents of bliss. Wait awhile; that weary head shall soon be girt with a crown. Stay awhile; that horny hand oflabor shall soon grasp the palm branch. Wipe away that tear; God shall soon wipe away thy tears for ever. Take away thatsigh-why sigh when the everlasting song is almost on thy lip? The portals of heaven stand wide open for thee. A few wingedhours must fly; a few more billows must roll o'er thee, and thou wilt be safely landed on the golden shore. Do not say, "Ishall be lost; I shall be cast away." Impossible.
Whom once he loves he never leaves,
But loves them to the end.
If he hath called thee, nothing can divide thee from his love. The wolf of famine cannot gnaw the bond; the fire of persecutioncannot burn the link, the hammer of hell cannot break the chain; old time cannot devour it with rust, nor eternity dissolveit, with all its ages. Oh! believe that thou art secure; that voice which called thee, shall call thee yet again from earthto heaven, from death's dark gloom to immortality's unuttered splendours; Rest assured, the heartthat called thee, beats with infinite love towards thee, a love undying, that many waters cannot quench, and that floodscannot drown. Sit thee down; rest in peace; lift up thine eye of hope, and sing thy song with fond anticipation. Thou shallsoon be with the glorified, where thy portion is; thou art only waiting here to be made meet, for the inheritance, and thatdone, the wings of angels shall waft thee far away, to the mount of peace, and joy, and blessedness, where
Far from a world of grief and sin,
With God eternally shut in,
thou shall rest for ever and ever. Examine yourselves then whether you have been called.-And may the love of Jesus be withyou. Amen.