Isaiah 45:22, “Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.”
My dear friends, this is a very simple text indeed. It says, ‘Look.’ Now lookin’ don’t take a deal of pain. It ain’t liftin’ your foot or your finger; it is just, ‘Look.’ Well, a man needn’t go to College to learn to look. You may be the biggest fool, and yet you can look. A man needn’t be worth a thousand a year to be able to look. Anyone can look even a child can look. But then the text says, ‘Look unto Me.’ Ay!” said the preacher, in broad Essex, “many on ye are lookin’ to yourselves, but it’s no use lookin’ there. You’ll never find any comfort in yourselves. Some look to God the Father. No, look to Him by-and-by. Jesus Christ says, ‘Look unto Me.’ Some on ye say, ‘We must wait for the Spirit’s workin’.’ You have no business with that just now. Look to Christ The text says, ‘Look unto Me.'”
Then the good man followed up his text in this way: “Look unto Me; I am sweatin’ great drops of blood. Look unto Me; I am hangin’ on the cross. Look unto Me; I am dead and buried. Look unto Me; I rise again. Look unto Me; I ascend to Heaven. Look unto Me; I am sittin’ at the Father’s right hand. 0 poor sinner, look unto Me! look unto Me!”
by Charles Spurgeon | Reprinted from C. H. Spurgeon: The Early Years (Banner of Truth), pp. 86-88, 99-100.
It’s not what you’re doing that gets you to Heaven, it’s where you’re looking. Look to Jesus.
Charles H. Spurgeon was born at Essex, England, June 19, 1834; led his class at every examination in school at Colchester; converted December 15, 1850; preached first sermon 1851 at age 16; became a pastor in 1852; published more than 1900 sermons in his lifetime; died 1892, he was mourned by thousands.
In Spurgeon’s own words:
I had been about five years in the most fearful distress in mind, as a lad. If any human being felt more of the terror of God’s law, I can indeed pity and sympathize with him. Bunyan’s “Grace Abounding” contains, in the main, my history. Some abysses he went into I never trod; but some into which I plunged he seems to have never known. I thought the sun was blotted out of my sky–that I had sinned so against God that there was no hope for me. I prayed – the Lord knoweth how I prayed, but I never had a glimpse of an answer that I knew of. I searched the Word of God; the promises were more alarming than the threatenings. I read the privileges of the people of God, but with the fullest persuasions that they were not for me. The secret of my distress was this: I did not know the gospel. I was in a Christian land, I had Christian parents, but I did not fully understand the simplicity of the gospel.I attended all the places of worship in the town where I lived, but I honestly believe that I did not hear the gospel fully preached. I do not blame the men, however. One man preached the divine sovereignty. I could hear him with pleasure; but what was that to a poor sinner who wished to know what he should do to be saved? There was another admirable man who always preached about the law; but what was the use of plowing up ground that needed to be sown? Another was a great practical preacher. I heard him, but it was very much like a commanding officer teaching the maneuvers of war to a set of men without feet. What could I do? All his exhortations were lost on me. I knew it was said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus and thou shalt be saved,” but I did not know what it was to believe in Christ.
I sometimes think I might have been in darkness and despair now, had it not been for the goodness of God in sending a snowstorm one Sunday morning, when I was going to a place of worship. When I could go no farther, I turned down a court and come to a little Primitive Methodist chapel. In that chapel there might have been a dozen or fifteen people. The minister did not come that morning; snowed up, I suppose. A poor man, a shoemaker, a tailor, something of that sort, went up into the pulpit to preach.Now it is well that ministers should be instructed, but this man was really stupid, as you would say. He was obliged to stick to his text, for the simple reason that he had nothing else to say. The text was “Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.” He did not even pronounce the words rightly, but that did not matter.
There was I thought, a gleam of hope for me in the text. He began thus “My dear friends, this is a very simple text indeed. It says ‘Look.’ Now that does not take a great deal of effort. It ain’t lifting your feet or your finger, it is just ‘look.’ Well, a man need not go to college to learn to look. You may be the biggest fool and yet you can look. A man need not be worth a thousand a year to look. Anyone can look; a child can look. But this is what the text says. Then it says ‘Look unto Me.'” “Ay,” said he, in broad Essex, “many of ye are looking to yourselves. No use looking there. You’ll never find comfort in yourselves. Some look to God, the Father. No, look to Him by and by. Jesus Christ says, ‘Look unto Me.’ Some of you say, ‘I must wait the Spirit a working.’ You have no business with that just now. Look to Christ. It runs: ‘Look unto Me.‘”Then the good man followed up his text in this way: “Look unto Me; I am sweating great drops of blood. Look unto Me; I am hanging on the cross. Look! I am dead and buried. Look unto Me; I rise again. Look unto Me; I ascend and sit at the Father’s right hand O! look to Me!” When he had got about that length, and managed to spin out ten minutes or so he was at the end of his tether. Then he looked at me under the gallery, and I dare say, with so few present, he knew me to be a stranger, He then said, “Young man, you look very miserable.” Well I did, but I have not been accustomed to having remarks made on my personal appearance from the pulpit before. However, it was a good blow struck. He continued:
“And you will always be miserable in life, and miserable in death if you do not obey my text. But if you obey now, this moment you will be saved.”Then he shouted as only a Primitive Methodist can: “Young man, look to Jesus Christ!” I did “look.”
There and then the cloud was gone, the darkness had rolled away, and that moment I saw the sun: I could have risen that moment and sung with enthusiasm of the precious blood of Christ, and the simple faith which looks alone to Him. Oh, that somebody had told me that before. TRUST CHRIST, AND YOU SHALL BE SAVED.Remember, dear brother, if you give your whole soul to the charge committed to you, it does not matter much about its appearing to be a somewhat small and insignificant affair, for as much skill may be displayed in the manufacture of a very tiny watch as in the construction of the town clock; in fact, a minute article may become the object of greater wonder than another of larger dimensions. Quality is a far more precious thing than quantity.
An All-round Ministry, p. 70
The Bible says that Judas “repented” (Greek: metamellomaiin, meaning, “to regret”) in Matthew 27:3. Yet, Jesus said Judas had a devil (John 6:70). Judas didn’t repent toward God in faith to be saved; but rather, he felt regret that he got caught for betraying the Lord. Judas brought the 30 pieces of silver back to the Pharisees, but they refused it. Judas cast down the coins on the floor and went and hanged himself (Matthew 27:5). Turning from the act of sin is not salvation. The false repentance of Judas evidences this truth.
The false prophets in Matthew 7:21-22 said “Lord, Lord,” but they were not saved. They had amended their ways… speaking in Jesus’ name, performing good works and miracles; but they were unsaved and went to Hell forever in their sins. They failed to do God’s will concerning salvation. John 6:40 tells us God’s will, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.” Lordship Salvationists are not saved because they think repentance means to change your lifestyle to be saved, which is self-righteousness. If you’re wrong on repentance, you’re not saved (just like Judas)!
Concerning salvation, the Bible uses a different meaning for repentance, which is simply “a change of mind.” Repentance in this sense is necessary for salvation. Mark 1:15, “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” The word “repent” here in mark 1:15 is the Greek metanoeo, meaning, “to think differently.” Hebrews 6:1, “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God.” Lordship Salvationists need to repent from their dead works of religious self-righteousness and trust the simple gospel of Jesus Christ.
Here is a great quote from Pastor Charles Spurgeon which evidences that Spurgeon did not teach forsaking sinful bad habits as a condition of salvation. In the quote below, Spurgeon is saying that you don’t have to change your life (forsake sinful bad habits) to be saved. My friend, God only saves sinners! Even if you’re the vilest ungodly sinner, God will save you if you’ll simply place your faith in Jesus Christ…
“You must not expect that you will be perfect in ‘repentance’ before you are saved. No Christian can be perfect. ‘Repentance’ is a grace. Some people preach it as a condition of salvation. Condition of nonsense! There are no conditions of salvation. God gives the salvation himself…”
— Charles Spurgeon
SOURCE: http://www.spurgeon.org/sermons/0044.htm (Charles Spurgeon, from a sermon titled, REPENTANCE UNTO LIFE, preached at the New Park Street Chapel, Southwark, on September 23, 1855)
Eternal life is a free gift, which is yours if you’ll receive it by faith in Christ Jesus. But let’s hear this truth from God Himself in the Bible…
Romans 4:5-6, “But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works.”
God only saves THE UNGODLY. Amen! Whatever changes need to be made in a person’s life is God’s department and He will attend to that you can be rest assured (Hebrews 12:6-8). Jesus is precious!