C. H. Spurgeon
Sermon Notes From Charles Spurgeon
These Notes from Spurgeon, famed for his expository preaching in England at Park St.
and Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, are well worth studying, adapting, and making
your own, for any sound preacher of the Gospel. He is deservedly known
to this day as "the Prince of Preachers," and is arguably the greatest
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25. A Frivolous Exercise.

And as thy servant was busy here and there, he was gone. And the king of Israel said unto him, So shall thy judgment be; thyself hast decided it. - I Kings 20:40

A man must be hard run indeed when he cannot forge an excuse. This is a very common one for the loss of the soul: "I was very busy, and had no time to attend to religion." They say, "a bad excuse is better than none:" this is very questionable. Here is an excuse which condemned the man who made it. The man in the prophet's story was ordered to keep a prisoner, and it became his first duty to do so; but he preferred to follow out his own wishes, and attend to his private concerns, and so the prisoner "was gone." It is clear that he had power to have attended to the king's business, for he attended to his own. His excuse was a confession that he was willfully disobedient.

I. IT IS AN EXCUSE WHICH SOME CANNOT USE.

1. They have but little to occupy them. They are noblemen, or ladies with no occupation, or persons of large leisure, or invalids who can do nothing for a livelihood, and therefore have ample time for reflection and reading.

2. They have done all their hard work, and are retired upon their savings, and find it hard to pass their time.

3. They are never busy, for they are idlers whom nothing could provoke to industry. They kill time.

II. IT IS AN EXCUSE WHICH IS NOT VALID.

1. There was no absolute need to be so busy. Many people make slaves of themselves with a view to gain, when they could earn enough for their needs, and yet have abundant leisure to care for their souls.

2. To have believed in the Lord would have lessened the needful care of life, and so the pressure of business would have been lightened. The fact is that no man can afford to neglect his soul, for thus he hinders his own life-work.

3. You find time for other necessaries,-to eat, drink, dress, converse, and sleep. And have you no time to feed your soul, to drink the living water, to put on the robe of righteousness, to talk with God, and to find rest in Christ?

4. You have time for diversion. Think of the many hours wasted in idle chat, unprofitable reading, or worse. If offered a holiday, or an evening's entertainment, you make time if you cannot find it. You have, then, time for weightier matters.

5. You find time for judging others, questioning great truths, spying out difficulties, and quibbling over trifles. Have you no time for self-examination, study of the word, and seeking, the Lord? Of course you have; where is it?

III. IT IS AN EXCUSE WHICH ACCUSES THE PERSON WHO MAKES IT.

1. You have enjoyed many mercies in your daily work, for you have been able to attend to your business; should not these have won your gratitude? 2. You have seen many trials while busy here and there; why did they not lead you to God?

3. You have abilities for business; and these should have been used for God. Did he not give them to you? Why expend them on your own selfish money-getting?

IV. IT IS AN EXCUSE WHICH WILL WOUND THE MEMORY OF SOME.

To have worked hard for nothing: to live hard, and lie hard, and yet to fail, and die poor at last, will be sad.

To have to leave all when you have succeeded in accumulating wealth will be wretched work. Yet so it must be.

V. IT IS AN EXCUSE WHICH CANNOT RESTORE THE LOSS.

If you have lost the time, you certainly had it entrusted to you, and you will be called to account for it: but you cannot regain it, nor make up for its loss .

How wretched to have spent a life in idly traveling, collecting shells, reading novels, etc., and to have therefore left no space for serving God, and knowing the Redeemer!

Men do worse than this: they sin, they lead others to sin, they invent ways of killing time, and then say they have no time.

They give their minds to skeptical thought, to propagating atheism, undermining Scripture, or arguing against the gospel, and yet have no time to believe and live!

Call to the young to use time while time is theirs.

Call to the aged to spend the remnant of their days well.

Call to Christians to look well to their children's souls, lest they slip from under their influence while they are busy here and there.

Call to experienced believers to see to their own joy in the Lord, lest they lose it in the throng.

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