From Spurgeon's sermon, "Presumptuous Sins"
You remind me, some of you, of that story of Dionysius the
tyrant, who, wishing to punish one who had displeased him,
invited him to a noble feast.
Rich were the viands that were spread upon the table,
and rare the wines of which he was invited to drink.
A chair was placed at the head of the table,
and the guest was seated in it.
Horror of horrors!
The feast was rich, but the guest was miserable,
dreadful beyond thought.
However splendid were the array of the servants,
and however rich the dainties, yet he who had
been invited sat there in agony.
For what reason?
Because over his head, immediately over it, there hung a
sword, a furbished sword, suspended by a single hair!
He had to sit all the time with this sword above him,
with nothing but a hair between him and death.
You may conceive the poor man's misery.
He could not escape; he must sit where be was.
How could he feast? How could be rejoice?
But O, my unconverted hearer, you are there this morning, man,
with all your riches and your wealth before you,
with the comforts of a home and the joys of a household;
you are there this day, in a place from which you cannot escape;
the sword of death above you, prepared to descend; and woe
unto you, when it shall cleave your soul from your body!