Spurgeon Daily Devotional Bible: September 11

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Spurgeon Daily Devotional Bible: September 11

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Never man spake like this man.”



Sermons do not produce the same effect upon all minds. Even when the Lord himself was the preacher some believed and some believed not, and among those who did believe there were several degrees of faith. May God grant that when we hear the word we may be led to embrace it, and feel its power in our inmost souls. One ground of unbelief in our Lord’s day appears to have been ignorance; his hearers knew that the Messiah would be born at Bethlehem, and supposing that Jesus was a native of Galilee, they could not believe in him. Had they taken the trouble to inquire, this stumbling-block would soon have been taken out of their way, for they would have learned that he was of the house and lineage of David, and was born in Bethlehem, according to the word of prophecy. If we remain in unbelief through wilful ignorance, we shall have no one but ourselves to blame.


Yes, even in the Redeemers congregation there were malicious hearts which remained unsoftened by his message of love, and would have repaid his affectionate zeal by making him their prisoner, if fear had not held them in check.

The Lord’s enemies among the rulers now resolved to seize him and put an end to his teaching, and therefore they sent officers to arrest him; but these returned empty-handed to those who sent them.


They had been spell-bound both by his matter and his manner, and the Pharisees were compelled to hear their own servants sing his praises. If we have ever heard the Lord Jesus speaks in our hearts, we shall fully agree with the verdict of the officers. Speak to us now, O Lord, and we shall rejoice with joy unspeakable.


This is an old and foolish objection. Rulers and eminent men are quite as often wrong as right, and human authority is a very doubtful rule.


This again is another stale form of opposition to the truth. The adversaries represent those who believed in Jesus as an ignorant rabble, a contemptible and cursed crew. We may well be content to share the world’s scorn with the despised saints, for it has always been the lot of the godly to be sneered at.


This was well spoken. Nicodemus may have been timid, but when he saw that his help was needed, he spoke out right well and wisely. What a blow was here aimed at the heart of prejudice! Prejudiced persons would do well to answer the question of Nicodemus.



He had no other resort. Sleep was for all except the Saviour: he went to meditation and to prayer. Blessed Lord, what an example dost thou set us by thus resorting to sacred solitude!

Never mortal spake like him!

More than man he needs must be,

Sure he is the God supreme,

For I feel his power in me.

He hath changed me by his word,

By his charms my soul subdued;

Ever since his voice I heard,

All my nature is renew’d!


Go, and sin no more.”



By a night of prayer he had prepared himself for a day of labour and opposition. It is wise, whenever we expect double work or conflict, to gird up our loins by special devotion. He who has overcome heaven by prayer has no cause to dread the face of his enemies. Calmly did our Lord begin his teaching, though he knew that his enemies were planning his destruction.


See the cunning of these foxes. If the Lord condemned the woman to die, they would then tax him with going beyond his province, and setting up for a ruler; and if he let her go, they would charge him with being the friend of vice.


These last words are added by the translators, and are not needed. He wrote on the ground to show his unwillingness to meddle with the matter, and to give time for their consciences to work. He did not at once unmask them, but gave them time to retreat if they were wise, or to invite a crushing defeat by their persevering folly.


He stooped this second time to allow the accusers time to slink away unobserved by him, and they quietly availed themselves of the opportunity.


beginning at the eldest, or at the elders, or chief elders


The trap had failed to secure the victim, but it caught those who had prepared it. Stunned by the blow which Jesus laid home upon them, the vile hypocrites took to their heels, feeling themselves to have been grossly foolish to have provoked such a disclosure.


Dr. Brown well observes: “What inimitable tenderness and grace! Conscious of her own guilt, and till now in the hands of men who had talked of stoning her, wondering at the skill with which her accusers had been dispersed, and the grace of the few words addressed to herself, she would be disposed to listen, with a reverence and teachableness before unknown, to our Lord’s admonition.


He pronounces no pardon upon the woman, like ‘Thy sins are forgiven thee; Go in peace.’ Much less does he say that she had done nothing condemnable: he simply leaves the matter where it was. He meddles not with the magistrate’s office, nor acts the judge in any sense: but in saying, ‘Go, and sin no more,’ which had been before said to one who undoubtedly believed (ch. 5:14), more is probably implied than expressed. If brought suddenly to conviction of sin, to admiration of her Deliverer, and to a willingness to be admonished and guided by him, this call to begin a new life may have carried with it what would ensure and naturally bring about a permanent change.”

Thine advocate in Jesus see!

‘Tis he that speaks the word; ‘tis he

That takes the prisoner’s part:

Not to condemn the world he came;

Believing now in Jesus’ name,

E’en now absolved thou art.

Who shall accuse th’ elect of God,

Protected by th’ atoning blood?

Tis God that justifies,

That bids thee go and sin no more—

Go in thy Saviour’s peace and power,

And trace him to the skies.