The Church is God’s witness to each generation, and her ministers are her voice. Through them she becomes vocal. By them she has spoken always to the world, and by them God has spoken to the church herself. … By gift and calling the minister is a man apart.
It is not enough, however, that the man of God preach the truth. He has no right to take up a man’s time telling him what is true merely. It is a doubtful compliment to any preacher to nod the head and say, “That is true.” The same might properly be said if he were doing no more than reciting the multiplication table. It also is true.
A church can wither as surely under the ministry of soulless Bible exposition as it can where no Bible at all is given. To be effective the preacher’s message must be alive; it must alarm, arouse, challenge; it must be God’s present voice to a particular people.
—A. W. Tozer
Of God and Men (Camp Hill, PA: WingSpread, 1995), 23–24.
When I was younger, I gave myself overmuch to human teaching, like others of my day, and when about seven or eight years ago I undertook to devote myself entirely to the Scriptures I was always prevented by philosophy and theology. But eventually I came to the point where led by Scripture and the Word of God I saw the need to set aside all these things and to learn the doctrine of God direct from his own Word. Then I began to ask God for light and the Scriptures became far clearer to me.
“Christ Our Captain”: An Introduction to Huldrych Zwingli (Quartz Hill, CA: Quartz Hill Publishing House, 2011), 60.
“Pearls do not lose their worth though swine trample upon them.”
Scriptural truth is none the less worthy to be held and proclaimed because foolish and depraved men pervert it to their own destruction. A knife is a very useful article; and, though some have committed suicide by its means, it is no reason why knives should be discarded. The doctrines of grace are pearls even after Antinomians have turned them over. Justification by faith is the crown-jewel of the gospel, though hypocrites abuse it. Every truth is perverted by polluted minds, but this is no reason for our renouncing what God has revealed; rather is it a strong argument for adorning the doctrine of our Saviour in all things.
My heart, see thou to it that the doctrines of grace are honored at thy hands. Since so many pour contempt upon them, do thou hold them in high esteem, and by thy life make them to be esteemed by others.
—Charles H. Spurgeon
Flowers from a Puritan’s Garden (Passmore & Alabaster, 1883).
Many have the knowledge of God, who have no delight in Him or His will. Owls have eyes to perceive that there is a sun, but by reason of the weakness of their sight have no pleasure to look upon a beam of it; so neither can a man by nature love or delight in the will of God, because of his natural corruption. That law that riseth up in men for conviction and instruction, they keep down under the power of corruption, making their souls not the sanctuary, but prison of truth (Rom 1:18). They will keep it down in their hearts, if they cannot keep it out of their heads, and will not endeavour to know and taste the spirit of it.
The Complete Works of Stephen Charnock, 1:194.
Those who have addicted themselves to the study of Nature, and have despised the Word, certainly cannot claim such immunity from mistake as to demand a revision of Scripture interpretation every time they enthrone a new hypothesis. The history of philosophy, from the beginning until now, reads very like a Comedy of Errors. Each generation of learned men has been eminently successful in refuting all its predecessors, and there is every probability that much of what is now endorsed as orthodox scientific doctrine will be entirely upset in a few years’ time. When we remember that one coterie of savants has proved to a demonstration that there is no such thing as mind, and that another has been equally successful in proving that there is no such thing as matter, we are led to ask the question, “When doctors differ, who is to decide?”
—Charles H. Spurgeon
The Clue of the Maze (Passmore & Alabaster, 1892).