A Spurgeon Snapshot: “Come Lord Jesus” and “Come Ye Sinners” (Revelation 22:17-21)

I am using the Spurgeon Study Bible for my Bible Read Through in 2023. All of the study notes are quotes from Charles Spurgeon’s sermons and writing. For more on Charles Spurgeon, click here. The Spurgeon Study Bible is available from Lifeway, Christianbook.com, and Amazon.

17 The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.

20 He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!

In the last chapter of Revelation, the verb “come” is used multiple times. In verse 17 alone, the Holy Spirit and the Bride of Christ (that is, the church) say “Come.” Anyone who hears (which goes back to the refrain used for all seven churches at the beginning of Revelation–“He who has an ear let him hear”) says “Come.” There is an invitation to all who are thirsty to come, and drink freely of the water of life (verse 17). Then in verse 20, Jesus assures us that He is coming soon, to which we respond, “Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!”

Spurgeon wrote, “Here is a twofold ministry… We say to Jesus ‘Come,’ and we say to the sinner, ‘Come’.” There’s the ministry of prayer for the return of Christ, but there is also the ministry of evangelism, where we beg lost people to come to Christ.

It is a sad calamity when any church ceases from its mission work. Such a church is clearly out of fellowship with the Spirit of God and has ceased to work with him… [It is] for this purpose there is a church left on the earth.

Charles H Spurgeon

If we read the book of Revelation with an inward focus; that is, only with an eye as to whether or not we ourselves are ready for the second coming of Jesus, we’ve lost the plot. The purpose of the book was never about becoming so familiar with the timeline of dispensational premillenialism that we will be able to spot the antichrist and brace for the tribulation (or the Rapture, if you aren’t mid-Trib). It is about praying for the Lord to come, and preparing the world for His coming.

Let the two parts be evenly balanced. Let there be prayer to our Lord–“Come quickly!”–and an equal measure of entreaty to sinners–“Come to Christ!” Let us blend the two in wise proportion and set both on fire. Let us tell of Christ’s coming for judgment and then invite people to come to Christ’s for mercy. Let us warn them that he is on the way but tell them that he waits to be gracious. While he lingers, they have time for repentance. Thus, we will both drive and draw, both convince and comfort.

Charles H Spurgeon




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