Some words of reminder from Simon Peter Long this beautiful and chilly Sunday morning here in New York. May God bless you today and always. -Alec
“I beseech you, therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice.”
Why does this great apostle lay such great stress upon this living sacrifice? Because he has in mind another sacrifice that was made, namely, the sacrifice of God, and that was the sacrifice of death. Oh, we cannot dwell too much upon the death of the Lord Jesus Christ on Calvary; that is the one story, the sweet old story that the teacher must not only teach, but hear, every week and every day; we must not only hear it, but think and meditate upon it very much.
I confess as I stand before you tonight, that about every good thought I have ever had, and about everything that has gone to make half a man of me, has been received very close to the cross of Christ.
There have been times when I felt in my own carnal way like taking revenge on some people, and then I would walk up to that cross and think a little while; I would hear my Savior saying there, as the blood was running down His hands and His feet and His breast, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do”; and the longer I stayed there, the more I was compelled to say, Oh, fool, why not let this revenge be washed out of thy heart with the prayer of Christ, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.
I have often thought, Oh, that I might be in a world where God’s laws were not so strict; that I might be in a world where I might obey that voice of the flesh which says, Come on, eat, drink and be merry, have a joyful time; then I have walked up to the cross of Calvary, and as I stood there and looked at that crown of thorns upon my Savior’s head, and at the wounds of Him hanging there in death, standing in the presence of God alone, I have said to myself, If those feet are bleeding and dying for me, must I permit my feet to walk on forbidden paths? If that One is dying there for me, atoning for a sinful world, must I go out and enjoy myself, treading upon the very thorns that are now pressing upon His bleeding brow? And the more I stood there, the more I felt that the victory would be given to the spirit, and that the flesh must be conquered.
Standing before the cross of Calvary, let us not forget to sing every day of the blood of Calvary. Let us not forget to sing
"Alas, and did my Savior bleed, And did my Sovereign die? Would He devote that sacred head For such a worm as I? Was it for crimes that I had done He groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity! grace unknown! And love beyond degree! Well might the sun in darkness hide. And shut his glories in, When Christ, the mighty Maker, died For man the creature's sin! Thus might I hide my blushing face, While His dear cross appears; Dissolve my heart in thankfulness, And melt my eyes to tears. But drops of grief can ne'er repay The debt of love I owe; Here, Lord, I give myself away, 'Tis all that I can do."
I would have you go to the cross every day, and as you look into the face of Jesus, say, and pray:
"O bleeding Head, and wounded, And full of pain and scorn; In mockery surrounded With cruel crown of thorn. O Head, before adorned With grace and majesty. Insulted now, and scorned – All Hail! I bid to Thee."
I would have you stand before that cross and say:
"Rock of Ages, cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee! Let the water and the blood, From Thy riven side that flowed, Be of sin the double cure. Save me. Lord, and make me pure."
From Long, Simon Peter. The Eternal Epistle. 1908