Spurgeon: “Hide not the offense of the cross”


“But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man”
—Galatians 1:11

A gospel which is after men will be welcomed by men; but it needs a divine operation upon the heart and mind to make a man willing to receive into his inmost soul this distasteful gospel of the grace of God. My dear brethren, do not try to make it tasteful to carnal minds.

Hide not the offense of the cross, lest you make it of none effect. The angles and corners of the gospel are its strength: to pare them off is to deprive it of power. Toning down is not the increase of strength, but the death of it.

Why, even among the sects, you must have noticed that their distinguishing points are the horns of their power; and when these are practically omitted, the sect is effete. Learn, then, that if you take Christ out of Christianity, Christianity is dead.

If you remove grace out of the gospel, the gospel is gone. If the people do not like the doctrine of grace, give them all the more of it. Whenever its enemies rail at a certain kind of gun, a wise military power will provide more of such artillery.

A great general, going in before his king, stumbled over his own sword. “I see,” said the king, “your sword is in the way.” The warrior answered, “Your majesty’s enemies have often felt the same.” That our gospel offends the King’s enemies is no regret to us.

–Charles H. Spurgeon, “Our Manifesto.” Preached on April 25th, 1890, at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London.

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  • Jerry S.

    Exd 34:29-35 HNV

    2Cr 3:12-18 HNV

    “When we merely say that we are bad, the ‘wrath’ of God seems a barbarous doctrine; as soon as we perceive our bad-ness, it appears inevitable, a mere corollary from God’s goodness…” C.S. Lewis

    “I do not believe that any man can preach the gospel who does not preach the Law.”

    “Lower the Law and you dim the light by which man perceives his guilt; this is a very serious loss to the sinner rather than a gain; for it lessens the likelihood of his conviction and conversion. I say you have deprived the gospel of its ablest auxiliary [its most powerful weapon] when you have set aside the Law. You have taken away from it the schoolmaster that is to bring men to Christ . . . They will never accept grace till they tremble before a just and holy Law. Therefore the Law serves a most necessary purpose, and it must not be removed from its place.” Charles Spurgeon

    “Ask Paul why [the Law] was given. Here is his answer, ‘That every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God’ (Romans 3:19). The Law stops every man’s mouth. I can always tell a man who is near the kingdom of God; his mouth is stopped. This, then, is why God gives us the Law—to show us ourselves in our true colors.”

    “The law can only chase a man to Calvary, no further.”

    “It is a great mistake to give a man who has not been convicted of sin certain passages that were never meant for him. The Law is what he needs … Do not offer the consolation of the gospel until he sees and knows he is guilty before God. We must give enough of the Law to take away all self-righteousness. I pity the man who preaches only one side of the truth, always the gospel and never the Law.” EB – Jos 1:7 D. L. Moody

    “The highest service to which a man may obtain on earth is to preach the law of God.” John Wycliffe


    P.s. the absolute first step toward recognizing and living in the Grace that is part of the GOD of Abraham, Isaac and Israel’s nature from BEREISHITH is being able to say, I erred. Anything beyond this is pride.

    • Rosalind Rodgers Daily

      This is just what I needed to hear. I am prevented by my husband and father of our three children from stressing the law’s demands. He has bought into a false dichotomy between the law and the Spirit. He believes that to stress the law is to “kill” our kids (they are now young adults: 18, 18, and 19). But they have little respect for the law. One is now dating a 29-year-old married man and justifies it because of “love”.
      I know it is important to administer discipline in love, but the law IS NOT in contrast to love. It supports, it delivers, it protects love.

      • Stephen Hale

        I am sorry for what you are going through with your child. I’m also sorry to say I think your husband is right. I say that because the offense of the Cross of Christ is for our offenses. If one law is broken; No matter now, how many times we obey the law, our offense can not be justified. Jesus took all the offensiveness upon Himself because He “loves” us.
        My comment is in kind and sincere regard for you and your daughter.

        • Tess

          Stephen a very good analogy would be that the law is like a thermometer. It tells us we are sick but we do not swallow the thermometer to cure the disease. The law is a teacher not the physician. Jesus’s death on the cross and the grace that we have through that is the cure we cannot live without. You can take every other sort of medicine but Christ and Christ alone cures the disease.

          When we repent and accept Christ into our hearts fulfilling the law becomes a joy and a our witness that we are what we claim to be and that the application of the law in our lives serves as the soothing ointment we have applied through Christ.

          When we attempt the cure by swallowing the thermometer we will always fail because THE LAW IS NOT THE CURE. Application of the law only is futile because we then openly crucify our Lord all over again which is the true meaning of Hebrews 6:4-6. If we will read ALL of Hebrews IN context we will see this. The whole book context is about the faith, hope and entering into the peace of God.

          We become Judaizer’s (A party of Jewish Christians in the Early Church, who either held that circumcision and the observance of the Mosaic Law were necessary for salvation.) It is a form of pride and was greatly fought AGAINST in the New Testament. Once we realize that Jesus spends so much of his ministry “angry” at the pharisees for their failure in this area. If you’ll ask yourself, “Why was Jesus so angry at these folks who were trying to abide by work oriented salvation?” It was because they built their religion and forgot their God! The Holy Spirit promises to lead us into “all Truth” and he can only do that when we stop our pride based religions of men, dogma (a principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true.) and open our hearts and study His word and walk in it.

          Not doing so shows that you have a pride issue. You’re presuppositions and pride are dictating your actions. If we will come to God knowing we are truly lost without Him and seeking Him with our whole hearts and asking for the Holy Spirits help we will begin to study the bible and walk correctly instead of in arrogance. When we use His word to fight “our” pride battles we are in serious trouble. A whole council of God perspective will keep us from a mere proof texting, Jesus crucifying life.

          • Tess

            Oh btw I’m not say you specific. I’m saying you in the general sense. Sorry Stephen it may have looked like I was referring to you and I wasn’t.

          • Stephen Hale

            I picked up on that. I agree with you…Amen.

    • Fenshaw

      Love it, love it, love it.

      “the absolute first step toward recognizing and living in the Grace that is part of the GOD of Abraham, Isaac and Israel’s nature from BEREISHITH is being able to say, I erred. Anything beyond this is pride.”

    • Sharon

      Paul also tells us that we are no longer under the law, but under grace for the law was too hard for man to keep and no matter if you did 50 right things under the law then slipped with just one part then the remaining 49 will become void. In other words you do the whole law or none at all. Just one wrong thought towards someone and you are guilty of all the other laws as well. That’s why the disciples preached the grace of GOD and if you are in Christ Jesus then you will not and should not want to sin and you will keep the commandments.

  • Jim Grunseth

    Perhaps it is true that some men and women fear sharing the gracious, rescuing, yet humbling truth of the Bible’s Gospel of grace. We will either fear God or man. If we fear man, we will want to draw people into being accepted, warmed, fed, and comforted so they will feel a sense of belonging with a nice, helpful group of people. Most of these warmed, fed, clothed souls, will still remain unregenerate, lost, damned. Yes, love, according to 1 Corinthians 13, is the greatest. However, if providing kindness and earthly hope for those loving lost, needy, lonely, cold souls lacks with it the true Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:8, 3:23, 6:23, John 14:6, Joel 2:32a, John 1:12-13, etc), then we will be merely clothing them on their self-sufficient, rebellious road to Hell. Let us preach, teach, and share the Gospel unapologetically. Let us love hard and strong with tender, affirming care. Let us treat the needy as if they were Jesus. But let us help them to fall at the foot of His Cross and cry out for mercy, forgiveness, salvation and New Life. Let us love them into God’s Kingdom…the divine path to Heaven.

    • Fenshaw

      Well said, well said,…well said.

      “if providing kindness and earthly hope for those loving lost, needy, lonely, cold souls lacks with it the true Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:8, 3:23, 6:23, John 14:6, Joel 2:32a, John 1:12-13, etc), then we will be merely clothing them on their self-sufficient, rebellious road to Hell. Let us preach, teach, and share the Gospel unapologetically. Let us love hard and strong with tender, affirming care.”

  • Ismael

    Yes, the law is important in fact necessary in revealing sin, but where sin abounds grace super abounds. The more we understand the truth of grace the more the attitude of our hearts change. Our hearts response is “I do not want to disappoint my dad because I love my dad.” We will never have a complete understanding of grace while in this earthly tent but the more we meditate on this truth the Holy Spirit, our teacher, will transform us into the image of Christ from glory to glory. Thank you Lord Jesus for the law was GIVEN through Moses but grace and truth CAME in Jesus.

    • Jerry S.

      As believers, are we to repent from our sins, an action (work) taken on our part to turn our lives toward GODS will ILO our own while under the grace of HIS accomplishments… or do we meditate towards a “heart attitude change” and a better understanding of “super abounding grace? There is a choice to be made.
      P.s. the LAW GOD gave Moshe reveals sin and shows us the lighted path, Psa 119:105-106 HNV

      • Tess

        These same issues were asked and answered by Paul in Romans chapters 8-9. AMAZING that we still don’t believe the answers he gave.

  • Callie

    We must keep teaching the Truth, regardless of how people feel about that Truth. If we fail to share God’s real Truth, then we have possibly hindered many people from conversion and salvation. We need balance. We need to love the unlovable (as we once were also) and welcome the “different” people, but we also have to disciple them and teach them the attributes of God and His commands to walk with Him daily after we are converted. It’s not a one time spiritual experience, it’s a lifetime journey. God is love, yet He is also the Righteous Judge. Today, even professing Christians lack the reverent fear of God. If you don’t fear Him, you don’t understand Him.

    • Tess

      When Pilot asked, “what is truth?” the truth was standing right in front of him.

      So true Callie but let’s always remember that it’s HIS TRUTH not ours that is needed. It’s VERY easy to forget that for all of us I think unless we truly get the gospel message and apply it to “our” lives. So many times we hurt the cause for Christ by misunderstanding and insisting “our” way is the right way. The church has failed in this respect so often and it’s heartbreaking to see. Too often we just rearrange our own prejudices.

      It’s quite telling when you think about it. Eve told the serpent that God said they could not eat or “even look at” the fruit. Actually God never said don’t touch. Eve added to God’s word. We can make those types of mistakes also.

      • Ismael

        Very true Tess, we must be careful not to add or take away from Gods perfect word. I have no idea how to use a sword but if I practice and am instructed by one who is skilled with a sword I will improve. The same is true with the sword of the spirit, Gods word. The Holy Spirit is the one who wields the sword who will teach us concerning all things. It is easy for us to have our minds made up concerning scriptures and it’s meanings but we must allow the Holy Spirit to teach us and to renew our minds. After all our teacher is the author. Thank you LORD Jesus

  • Stephen Hale

    Jerry my comment to Ms. Daily was in my empathy with her experience.
    I found a better way in love and and prayer trusting the Lord with young adult children. Her husband is on the right path. I encourage her to see and understand that. As you point out the law. Ms. Daily sort of implied that her hildren were in rebellion to the law. Commandment number five,”Honor your Mother and Father.”
    Allow me to assure you that parental and church enforcement of the ten commandments has little to no chance of success of conversion with any young adult children. A very good example of why the gospel is such great news. Yet do not dismiss them if cracking the whip doesn’t work.
    We “Love” them. Love helps us recognise our children and that which we have no ability to do for them. Love helps to make parents and church folk available and approachable.
    The message of the Cross; It takes little to no research to recognise the length of enumerated offenses of the Cross of Christ and the gospel of Grace. The Cross of Christ might be the most underpreached message yet hold the very life changing power of God. Again as Spurgeon preached to understand this message, it takes a divine operation of God on our heart and mind to receive it into our inmost soul. It is the way for our young adult children to be made right with the Lord and come home.

  • Stephen Hale

    HI Chris,
    I’m not real sure how this Blog is working. The Blogs rules posted don’t seem to actually explain what has changed. Posts and replies vanish for days on end and then reappear. I’m wondering if you wouldn’t mind clairifying the changes to this Blog for me please.

  • Tess

    The law also provided a way for forgiveness, albeit its total fulfillment was in Christ’s sacrifice.???????

    Psalm 14:2-4 (NKJV)
    The Lord looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. They have all turned aside,
    They have together become corrupt;
    There is none who does good,
    No, not one.

    Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge,
    Who eat up my people as they eat bread,
    And do not call on the Lord?

    Romans 3:9-11 (NKJV)
    (All Have Sinned)
    What then? Are we better than they? Not at all. For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin.
    As it is written:

    “There is none righteous, no, not one;
    There is none who understands;
    There is none who seeks after God.

    It’s amazing and frankly very sad that man is so self righteous to think he can earn his way into heaven. The sacrificial system NEVER forgave sin. Sin’s were merely rolled back with a sacrifice of innocent blood which symbolizes Christs death on the cross. Every Jew, every Messianic Jew and anyone who has studied the Old Testament and sacrifices knows that! It’s only western thinking…we only read the New Testament that misunderstands it. But man will continue to insist that his works are what make him righteous instead of realizing that it is the grace of God.

    Romans 8:2-4 (NKJV)
    For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

  • Tess

    Romans 9:29-33
    And as Isaiah said before:

    ​​“Unless the LORD of Sabaothfn had left us a seed,
    ​​We would have become like Sodom,
    ​​And we would have been made like Gomorrah.”fn
    30 What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness of faith; 31 but Israel, pursuing the law of righteousness, has not attained to the law of righteousness.fn 32 Why? Because they did not seek it by faith, but as it were, by the works of the law.fn For they stumbled at that stumbling stone. 33 As it is written:

    ​​“Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense,
    ​​And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.

  • Tess

    Romans 10:1-13
    Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israelfn is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.
    5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, “The man who does those things shall live by them.”fn 6 But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ ”fn (that is, to bring Christ down from above) 7 or, “ ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ ”fn (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”fn (that is, the word of faith which we preach): 9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says,“Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”fn 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the LORDshall be saved.”fn

  • Michael Snow

    “My dear brethren, do not try to make it tasteful to carnal minds.”
    Spurgeon helps us to see how carnal our own minds are. http://spurgeonwarquotes.wordpress.com/