Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. –James 1:12
The following are seven quotes from Spurgeon’s sermon on James 1:12 on being tried, remaining steadfast and being blessed.
- Some suppose that the wealthy must be blessed—but if their lives were written, it could be proven, without a doubt, that some of those who have had the largest possessions have had the very least of blessedness
- Do but clap your hands and the birds that cover the fields fly away — and so do riches — they “take to themselves wings and fly away.” How should such fleeting things bring blessedness to the fields on which they light for so short an hour? No, look not in gold mines for blessedness, for it gleams not among the nuggets. Blessedness cannot be gotten for all the treasures of the miser, or the wealth of nations.
- Not the high but the holy are blessed — not those who sit with the great, but those who serve with the good are marked out by the Lord as blessed
- Does he that increases knowledge increase joy? Does he not, rather add to his sorrow? If knowledge were bliss, the devil would be in Heaven! Should we possess the gift of prophecy and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, yet these would profit us nothing in the trade of happiness. Telescopes, microscopes, air pumps and calculating machines are not the instruments of that alchemy which brings happiness out of all conditions!
- No, you cannot find blessedness on a throne nor in making many books, nor in seeking out many inventions, nor in enjoying all luxuries. These things all cry, “It is not in me!” Blessedness is a thing which is not discoverable beneath the moon, apart from Him who sits above this world and looks down — and by His Spirit influences human minds after the best things. Apart from Him you may have health and wealth and talent and eminence and power and dignity — and yet be written down among the most wretched of mankind!
- He is blessed who has tried his faith, who has gone to God with a promise and received an answer to his prayer. He is blessed who has had his faith tried — who, having been put into the furnace, has by that faith in God been made to walk safely amid the flaming coals and to come out unharmed. Untried faith is questionable faith. Is it faith at all? Was there ever in this world a Believer altogether without trouble, or a grain of faith which had undergone no trial?
- You need to have a religion which is tested every day in the week and which stands you in good stead because it can endure the test! You are blessed if you have a religion which God gives, which God tries, which God sustains, which God accepts! As an uncultivated garden is no garden, so untried godliness is no godliness! A faith that will not bear strain and test is no faith! A love that cannot endure a temptation is no love to God at all! See, then, he is not blessed who is screened from temptation, but he is blessed whose faith, hope, love and every Grace will bear the trial.
Read this whole powerful and helpful sermon: A Discourse Upon True Blessedness Here and Hereafter.
Photo by: Erich Ferdinand (Creative Commons)