Who made you to differ?
It is grace, free, sovereign grace, which has made you to differ!
Should any here, supposing themselves to be the children of
God, imagine that there is some reason "in them" why they
should have been chosen, let them know, that as yet they are in
the dark, concerning the first principles of grace, and have not
yet learned the gospel.
If ever they had known the gospel, they would, on the other
hand, confess that they were less than the least- the offscouring
of all things- unworthy, ill-deserving, undeserving, and hell-
deserving, and ascribe it all to distinguishing grace, which has
made them to differ; and to discriminating love, which has
chosen them out from the rest of the world.
Great Christian, you would have been a great sinner
if God had not made you to differ!
O! you who are valiant for truth, you would have been
as valiant for the devil if grace had not laid hold of you!
A seat in heaven shall one day be yours; but a chain in hell
would have been yours if grace had not changed you!
You can now sing his love; but a licentious song might have been
on your lips, if grace had not washed you in the blood of Jesus!
You are now sanctified, you are quickened, you are justified;
but what would you have been today if it had not been for the
interposition of the divine hand?
There is not a crime you might not have committed;
there is not a folly into which you might not have run.
Even murder itself you might have committed
if grace had not kept you.
You shall be like the angels; but you would have been like the
devil if you had not been changed by grace!
Therefore, never be proud- all the garments you have
are from above; rags were your only heritage.
Never be proud, though you now have a wide domain of grace;
you had once not a single thing to call yours own, except your
sin and misery.
You are now wrapped up in the golden righteousness of the
Savior, and accepted in the garments of the beloved!
But you would have been buried under the black mountain of
sin, and clothed with the filthy rags of unrighteousness,
if he had not changed you!
And are you proud?
Do you exalt yourself?
O! strange mystery, that you, who have borrowed everything,
should exalt yourself; that you, who have nothing of your own,
but have still to draw upon grace, should be proud- a poor
dependent pensioner upon the bounty of your Savior, and yet
proud; one who has a life which can only live by fresh streams of
life from Jesus, and yet proud!
Go, hang your pride upon the gallows, as high as Haman!
Hang it there to rot, and you stand beneath, and execrate it to all
eternity; for sure of all things most to be cursed and despised is
the pride of a Christian.
He, of all men, has ten thousand times more reason than any
other to be humble, and walk lowly with his God, and kindly and
humbly toward his fellow-creatures.
From Spurgeon's sermon, "The Fruitless Vine"