Apr 5, 2009

Spurgeon's Conversion

From Spurgeon's own description of his conversion experience we learn that he was no Hyper Calvinist, how he did not separate his coming to faith with his coming to new life, how he did not separate his regeneration from his conversion and salvation, and how he did not take the means of the gospel out of his rebirth experience.

Spurgeon wrote:

"The thought struck me, How did you come to be a Christian? (did Spurgeon equate becoming a "Christian" with his being "born again" and "regenerated"? I say he did equate them and I challenge any Hyperist to show, from the words of Spurgeon, where he ever believed he was born again prior to the moment he became a Christian) I sought the Lord. (Spurgeon did not believe he was a Christian, or saved, or born again, at this time. Yet, he believed he was seeking the Lord. Only the Hyperist would argue that Spurgeon was already saved, born again, or regenerated, when he was seeking the Lord at this time) But how did you come to seek the Lord? The truth flashed across my mind in a moment-I should not have sought Him unless there had been some previous influence in my mind to make me seek Him. (Did Spurgeon believe that this previous "influence" was his "regeneration" or "new birth"? Again, only the Hyperist would argue that this "influence" meant regeneration influence. Spurgeon would view it as preparatory or common grace at work) I prayed, thought I, but then I asked myself, How came I to pray? I was induced to pray by reading the Scriptures. How came I to read the Scriptures? I did read them, but what led me to do so? Then, in a moment, I saw that God was at the bottom of it all, and that He was the Author of my faith, and so the whole doctrine of grace opened up to me, and from that doctrine I have not departed to this day, and I desire to make this my constant confession, "I ascribe my change wholly to God."

See here

Spurgeon describes his conversion as follows:

"Through the Lord's restraining grace, and the holy influence of my early home life, both at my father's and my grandfather's, I was kept from certain outward forms of sin in which others indulged; and, sometimes, when I began to take stock of myself (was he born again at this point, as the Hyperist might assert? No!), I really thought I was quite a respectable lad, and might have been half inclined to boast that I was not like other boys, untruthful, dishonest, disobedient, swearing. Sabbath breaking, and so on. But, all of a sudden, I met Moses, carrying in his hand the law of God; and as he looked at me, he seemed to search me through and through with his eyes of fire. He bade me read 'God's Ten Words',—the ten commandments—and as I read them, and remembered what I had been taught about their spiritual meaning as interpreted by the Lord Jesus Christ, they all seemed to join in accusing and condemning me in the sight of the thrice-holy Jehovah. Then, like Daniel, "my comeliness was turned in me into corruption, and I retained no strength;" and I understood what Paul meant when he wrote, "Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God." (Did Spurgeon believe that he was born again when he was in this state of conviction of condemnation? No!)

See here

And again, of his conversion, he wrote:

"It is not everyone who can remember the very day and hour of his deliverance; but, as Richard Knill said, ‘At such a time of day, clang went every harp in Heaven, for Richard Knill was born again,’ it was e’en so with me. The clock of mercy struck in Heaven the hour and moment of my emancipation, for the time had come. Between half-past ten o’clock, when I entered that chapel, and half-past twelve o’clock, when I was back home again, what a change had taken place in me! I had passed from darkness into marvelous light, from death to life. Simply by looking to Jesus, I had been delivered from despair, and I was brought into such a joyous state of mind that, when they saw me at home, they said to me, ‘Something wonderful has happened to you;’ and I was eager to tell them all about it..."

See here

Again, only the Hyperist can read these confessions of Spurgeon about the time of his birth into the kingdom of God, and affirm that Spurgeon was born again even before he was converted in the Methodist Chapel at the time he looked to Calvary and trusted Christ.

He did not believe that his state, under conviction of sin, by the law, was an evidence of his regeneration or spiritual birth. Only the Hyperist sees such conviction of sin as evidence of spiritual life and regeneration. But, Spurgeon was no Hyper Calvinist. Spurgeon believed that he was born again, justified, converted, and saved, when he placed his trust in Christ alone for salvation.

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