What is this?

-Spurgeon, "Awake! Awake!"

"Bring out your dead!
 Bring out your dead!
 Bring out your dead!"

Then comes the ringing of a bell.

What is this?

Here is a door marked with a great white cross.
Lord, have mercy upon us!
All the houses down that street seem to be marked with
that white death cross. What is this?
Here is the grass growing in the streets;
no one is found treading the solitary pavement.

There is not a sound to be heard but those horse-hoofs
like the hoofs of death's pale horse upon the stones,
the ringing of that bell that sounds the death-knell to many,
and the rumbling of the wheels of that cart, and the
dreadful cry-- "Bring out your dead!"

Do you see that house? A physician lives there.
He is a man who has great skill, and God has lent him
wisdom. A little while ago, while in his study, God was
pleased to guide his mind, and he discovered the secret of
the plague. He was plague-smitten himself, and ready to
die; but he lifted the blessed vial to his lips, and he drank
a draught and cured himself.

Do you believe what I am about to tell you?
Can you imagine it?

That man has the prescription that will heal all these
people- he has it in his pocket. He has the medicine
which, if once distributed in those streets, would make the
sick rejoice, and put that death bell away.

But he is sleeping! He is asleep! He is asleep!
O you heavens! why do you not fall and crush the wretch?
O earth! how could you bear this demon upon your
bosom? Why not swallow him up quick?
He has the medicine; but he is too lazy to go and tell forth
the remedy. He has the cure, and is too idle to go out and
administer it to the sick and the dying!
No, my friends, such an inhuman wretch could not exist!

But I can see him here today-- There YOU are!
You know the world is sick with the plague of sin,
and you yourself have been cured by the remedy which
has been provided. You are asleep, inactive, loitering.
You do not go forth to

"Tell to others round,
What a dear Saviour you have found."

There is the precious gospel; but you do not go and put it
to the lips of a sinner. There is the all-precious blood of
Christ; but you never go to tell the dying what they must
do to be saved. The world is perishing with worse than
the plague-- and you are idle!!!

You do not go to tell them of the sovereign remedy that
God has provided for the cure of sick souls.

The death-bell is ringing even now; hell is crying out,
howling with hunger for the souls of men--
"Bring out the sinner! Bring out the sinner!
Bring out the sinner! Let him die and be damned!"

And there are you, professing to be a Christian,
and doing nothing which might make you the instrument of
saving souls- never putting out your hand to be the means
in the hand of the Lord, of plucking sinners as brands from
the burning!

The world's eminent danger demands
that we should be active and not be slumbering.

And are we asleep, doing nothing? Then God forgive us!
But surely, of all the sins he ever does forgive, this is the
greatest-- the sin of slumbering when a world is being
damned; the sin of being idle when Satan is busy,
devouring the souls of men.

Beloved brethren, the bridegroom comes!
Awake! Awake!
The earth must soon be dissolved, and the heavens must
melt! Awake! Awake!
O Holy Spirit arouse us all, and keep us awake.