B&H to Publish Lost Spurgeon Sermons with Critical Review

spurgeon, wordsearch, b&h, publishing, sermons

By Bob Smietana

NASHVILLE, Tenn:

Nineteenth century legendary London pastor Charles Spurgeon was a publishing and preaching juggernaut.

He preached to more than 10 million people, baptized more than 14,000 converts, and sold more than 50 million copies of his sermons. Spurgeon’s fans nicknamed him “the Prince of Preachers” and flocked to hear him.

All told, more than 3,500 Spurgeon sermons were eventually published, but none date from his early ministry, said Spurgeon scholar Christian George.

That will change next year.

Nashville-based B&H Publishing will release “The Lost Sermons of Charles Spurgeon,” a multi-volume edition of early Spurgeon sermons and sermon outlines.

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George and Baird look over the sermons.

“I have been involved in Christian publishing for over twenty years,” said Jim Baird, publisher of B&H Academic. “A project like this comes to you once in your lifetime if you are fortunate.”

The collection of over 400 sermons and outlines dates from Spurgeon’s days as a young pastor outside of Cambridge. The son of a minister, Spurgeon came to faith in 1850 during a service at a Primitive Methodist Church. That encounter with God set him on a path to become one of the most prolific preachers in the English language.

“It is sometimes overlooked that Charles Spurgeon published more words in the English language than any other Christian in history,” said George, curator of the Spurgeon library at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City.

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Charles Spurgeon, known as the “prince of preachers.”

Spurgeon began preaching not long after his conversion. At 17, he became pastor of a Baptist church in Waterbeach, not far from Cambridge. He kept his sermon outlines – which he called “skeletons” – along with some full-text sermons in a series of handwritten journals.

The first of the 13 newly-discovered journals is dated October 1849, a few months before Spurgeon’s conversion. The last is dated from 1854, right before he became pastor of the New Park Street Chapel in London. The journals reveal how Spurgeon developed his theology as well as his skill in preaching.

“They give us a rare and remarkable glimpse into Spurgeon’s pre-London life and ministry,” George said.

Some of the journals show Spurgeon’s spiritual struggles. Many of the sermons end with simple and sometimes blunt prayers.

“Lord, revive my stupid soul,” Spurgeon wrote after finishing one sermon. Another ended with, “Oh my God. Do help. For Jesus’ sake.”

After becoming a pastor in London, Spurgeon had planned to publish those early sermons. But that never came to pass. They were stored in the archives of Spurgeon’s College in London, and forgotten.

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A drawing.

George discovered the journals three years ago, while doing research at the college. A librarian there brought him a stack of Spurgeon’s journals to look through.

“Only when I began flipping through their pages did I realize the significance,” he said. “These were the lost sermons Spurgeon tried so long ago to publish.”

The multi-volume set from B&H Academic will include sermons from those journals, along with critical commentary on them from George. It will be the first critical edition of Spurgeon’s work ever to be published, according to George.

Most other works about Spurgeon either reprint his sermons without analysis, or only focus on his “celebrity-like reputation, uncanny oratorical abilities, and worldwide influence,” said George. That leaves many people with a one-dimensional view of the great preacher.

“But there is a growing interest in Spurgeon scholarship in recovering his humanity – his inconsistencies, his weaknesses, his doubts, struggles, and sufferings,” he said. “In this way, we discover a Spurgeon who does not arrive on the theological landscape of nineteenth-century Britain in perfect, polished form, but instead a preacher in progress whose exegesis, rhetorical tendencies, and homiletic method evolve over the first five years of his preaching ministry.”

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The stack of journals.

Jason Allen, president of Midwestern Seminary, said he is “proud to support Dr. George and to partner with B&H and LifeWay Christian Resources in this historic undertaking. The Christian tradition as a whole will prove the true beneficiary of this monumental work.”

LifeWay president and CEO Thom Rainer said he is excited to make the sermons available to pastors and scholars alike. “This project is the most recent example of the tremendous impact B&H is having on evangelical publishing. As we constantly endeavor to faithfully serve the church, we believe the Lord will bless our efforts,” Rainer said.

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An open page of the journals.

George hopes this new edition of early Spurgeon sermons will lead to more scholarly interest in the great preacher. Pastors, he said, will also benefit from these early sermons.

“ He models for us an unwavering commitment to Christ-centered preaching, fervent prayer and discipleship, local and world evangelism, and incarnational urban ministries,” George said.

Baird said the new books will be published next year. Digital versions will be available exclusively through WORDsearch.

Bob Smietana is senior writer for Facts & Trends magazine. 

4th of July Sale – 40 Books Marked Down to $4 Each

4thjuly, independence day, sale, books, americaHappy Independence Day Eve! Since our Customer Service Reps will be enjoying the holiday with family and friends, we’ve put together a special 4th of July Sale, good all the way through July 14.  For this sale, we’ve hand-picked 40 excellent tools for your digital library and priced them at just $4 each. You’ll find volumes normally priced at $27.95, $24.95, $19.95, $14.95, and $12.95, but, to celebrate the holiday, they’re all just $4 each. Click here to browse this sale. Downloading new content is fast and easy, and you can be using it within minutes. If you prefer ordering by phone, call 1-800-888-9898. Mention special offer 8261.

You’ll find lots of tools for preaching and teaching. We’ve selected a wide range of volumes from our categories of: Commentaries, Sermon Helps, Theology, Homiletics, Study Notes, Word Studies, Dictionaries & Encyclopedias, Sermon Illustrations, Handbooks, Outlines, Evangelism, and more! Click here to browse this 4th of July Sale now.

R.C. SPROUL 6-Vol. Commentary – Sale ends Monday

This is the commentary many have been waiting for. Respected theologian, R.C. Sproul, presents the St. Andrew’s Expositional Commentary. This is a teaching and preaching commentary, as all included material has been preached by Dr. Sproul from his pulpit at the St. Andrew’s Chapel in Sanford, FL. These 6 volumes cover the books of Matthew, Mark, John, Acts, Romans, and 1-2 Peter. Purchased in hardcover, these 6 books sell for $210.95, but, through July 7, this bundle is on sale for only $49.95. Click here for more details or to download today. Or, call 1-800-888-9898 and mention special offer 8261.

Vance Havner Bundle – Lowest Price Ever
Here’s a highly-collectible library of preaching and teaching helps by the great preacher Vance Havner. Through July 7, our Vance Havner Bundle, a 25 volume, hard-to-find collection is on sale for70% off. This includes 8 sermon books (with over 100 Havner sermons), 5 devotionals, 5 books on Christian Living, and 7 additional Havner volumes on a host of biblical topics. For more details and a complete listing of the works included, click here. Or, if you prefer ordering by phone, call 1-800-888-9898. Mention special offer 8261. This sale ends on Monday.

I hope you’ll take advantage of these specials before they expire. As always, I guarantee you’ll be delighted or I’ll be happy to refund your purchase.

In His Service,

Jim Baird

Minute for Missions – Hope in Ethiopia

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Please note: The views & opinions expressed in any guest post featured on our site are those of the guest author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions & views of LifeWay Christian Resources.

As we entered the one-room mud hut, the first thing we noticed was the absence of light. The one window was tightly shut and there was no lamp to illuminate the darkness. The second thing we noticed was the woman lying on a straw pallet quietly moaning in pain. As soon as we saw her, we stopped, bumping into one another, dumb in stupor. We’d come to visit her and the little boy, her son, who was playing outside. But, how do you visit the dying when you thought you were going to see the living? As we fumbled through the darkness, our translator took over, “I will ask her how we can pray for her. It is not appropriate to ask other questions at this time.”

This was one of our first visits to families supported by a partnership between Food for the Hungry, local Ethiopian congregations, and our home church in Austin, Texas. The AIDS pandemic has created a generation of orphans in the world’s second largest continent. In years past, grandparents and aunts & uncles would care for these children, but many of those potential caregivers have died as well. For those caregivers who remain, there are just too many children and not enough resources to care for them all. The result: children living alone, trying to act as grown-ups as they grow up. These young ones are incredibly vulnerable to malnutrition, disease, exploitation of the cruelest kind, and the fate of living in an unbroken state of extreme poverty. Our cross-Atlantic partnership tries to catch these little ones in a safety net of love, protection, and grace.

We’d traveled halfway around the world to visit these children and children who had parents still battling this ravaging disease. The woman lying on the floor answered our translator’s question by saying that she was worried about what would happen to her boy if she were to die. She was worried about how she could pay her $20 rent every month when she was too sick to work. She was worried…and she began to weep. By this time, the little boy had entered the room, and as his mother wept, he curled his little body up next to her feet and began to weep with her. After a quiet pause, we asked if we could pray over her. With her permission, we gently laid hands on her frail frame and began to pray. As we prayed, the darkness that seemed to be so overwhelming was inched out by the one true Light. He was there, before us, but it was prayer that opened our eyes to see Him.

John 1:5 says, “…the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” I don’t know what darkness the Lord has asked you to step into or what battles he has asked you to fight. You might be waging war for someone in your congregation stuck in sin, for a family member who’s fallen ill, or for the children orphaned by AIDS in Africa. There are times when the fight can seem overwhelming, crushing even. There are other times when you know that the Lord has called you to just a little more fight before a breakthrough is secured.

Whatever war you’re waging, can I encourage you to not give up? to not stop pressing into Him? to fall a thousand times, but get up again? And, if you have called it quits, can I tell you that it’s not too late to ask to be re-enlisted? He is still the God who gives flesh and breath to the dry bones of warriors long dead.

Ephesians 6 tells us that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” And 1 John 4:4 reminds us that “the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” Romans 16:20 tells us that “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” And, finally, after a long treatise on the victory Christ secured for us over death, Paul encourages us with these words from 1 Corinthians 15:58, “Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”

Kristina Vandiver works at WORDsearch. She loves the Lord,  her husband, her pets (especially her cat) and studying God’s Word. 

How to Stop Clever Atheists from Stripping Our Children of Their Faith

truth_matters_bannerThis might be the most important email I’ve ever written, and I need your help. Have you noticed all the attention being given to atheists, skeptics and “free thinking” societies lately? I used to just dismiss these as fringe groups, but not anymore. This is serious. LifeWay Research has uncovered some alarming statistics.

Did you know 4 out of 10 young people (ages 18-22) leave church and never return? Many of our children head for college and, no longer under the watchful eyes of Christian parents, they are taught to think independently. This can be a good thing, but many secular colleges teach what students learned in church was naive and wrong. You and I know better, but what about our impressionable youth? Are they prepared for the challenges to their faith? Most are not. Click here to learn more about Truth Matters, an intelligent and reasonable way to defend one’s faith. Or, call us at 1-800-888-9898 and mention special offer 8151.

TRUTH MATTERS

Truth does matter. Jesus said, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” B&H Publishers have wisely determined that now is the time to equip our youth with the truth. This remarkable new book was the combined effort of 3 top evangelical Bible scholars. It’s written in an easygoing style suited for high school readers. It answers the tough questions students are sure to be asked by college teachers and skeptics. I’ve read this book and I want everyone to read it, especially high school students. It’s only $9.95. Click here to order a hardcover copy. For a limited time, shipping is free (in the continental US) regardless of how many books you order. I’ll also include a free copy for your WORDsearch library, and you’ll be able to access it on your iPad, iPhone and Android devices.

Atheists Are Stripping Our Children of Their Faith?

Yes! And it breaks my heart. A popular leader in this movement is a clever “Bible scholar,” a professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His name is Dr. Bart Ehrman and 4 of his books have been on the New York Times best-seller list. Bart has a magnetic personality, and he (along with many others like him) teaches that most of what you learned about the Bible is a lie. Truth Matters takes on the teachings of Bart Ehrman, one issue at a time. It gives young readers the confidence that many equally qualified scholars disagree with Ehrman’s conclusions, and for good reason. This much-needed book equips our young people with the truth, and the ability to resist the Ehrmans of this world who seek to strip them of their Christian faith.

Students Will Find Answers to Difficult Questions Like:

  • Was Christianity just made up?
  • Is the Bible full of irresolvable contradictions?
  • Is God incapable of keeping us from suffering?
  • What gives the Bible any authority or credibility?
  • How can we know what it says if we don’t have any originals?
  • Have the biblical documents been forged to look more authentic?
  • Why weren’t other books included that were just as valuable?
  • Was the resurrection a hoax?

Read the First Couple of Chapters and You’ll See What I Mean

Click here and you can read the preface and the first chapter of Truth Matters. It’s stated better than I can describe here. Here’s a quote from the first page:

You’re about to face a religion professor who’s actually better at arguing your case for the validity of Christian faith than you are. And when his spiritually shocking lectures start turning into assignments for thousand-word papers and midterm exams, he won’t be taking your favorite Bible verse for an answer. What will you do then?

This Is Personal, and I’m Asking for Your Help

My wife Shelley and I have 5 kids and 3 grandkids. They are precious to us and I’m sure yours are too. Like many parents, we’ve done our best to raise them in a Christian home, instilled with a steadfast faith in God. Was it enough? Will they withstand the doubts and challenges they face in a godless world? Truth Matters will help them stand strong, as it offers intelligent, reasonable answers to the difficult questions that will inevitably challenge the faith of every believer.

Here’s how you can help. Make sure every high school student in your church gets a copy of Truth Matters. It’s easy to read, and they’ll have all summer to read it and be prepared to answer those who will challenge their faith in the coming days. Especially those headed for college. Will you help me?

I Can’t Imagine a Better Graduation Gift than Truth Matters

Most of the time I offer software books for your digital library. But I believe Truth Matters is so important, it needs to be a real, hardcover book that you put into the hands of every student. Your investment in young lives is only $9.95 each. Better yet, purchase Truth Matters by the case. That’s 10 hardcover books for $50 (just five bucks a book). Whether you buy one book or 100, I’ll include a digital version for your WORDsearch library for free. This is important and you can make a difference.Just click here. If you prefer to order by phone, call us at 1-800-888-9898 and mention special offer 8151.

In His Service,

Jim Baird

P.S. - Truth Matters. It’s only $9.95 for a hardcover copy, plus I’ll include a free digital edition for your WORDsearch library. We also offer case lots of 10 for $50. That’s just $5 a book, with free shipping (in the continental US). Click here. Thank you for equipping our youth with the truth.

The “Show Me How” Series – A Blessing to Your Ministry – Plus More News

showmeToday I’d like to introduce you to the excellent works of Dr. Larry Moyer. Dr. Moyer is a recognized expert in the field of evangelism and has authored 3 books in the Show Me How series that have recently been released by WORDsearch. I believe you’ll find all 3 of these books to be helpful tools for preaching, teaching and sharing the Gospel with others, especially when used within WORDsearch.For a limited time, we’ve put all 3 books on sale and you can save even more by taking the Show Me How BundleClick here for more details. Or if you prefer to order by phone, call 1-800-888-9898 and mention special offer 8119.

Show Me How to Share the Gospel - In this volume, Dr. Moyer’s experience, wisdom and passion for evangelism is obvious. You’ll discover practical ways to share your faith with anyone in any setting or situation.

Show Me How to Share the Gospel is on sale now for $7.95 (Reg. $9.95) Click here for details.

Show Me How to Preach Evangelistic Sermons - In this volume, you’ll experience Dr. Moyer’s straightforward approach to building and preaching expository sermons that can hold the attention of an audience and call people to Christ.
Show Me How to Preach Evangelistic Sermons is on sale now for $19.95 (Reg. $29.95) Click here for details.

Show Me How to Illustrate Evangelistic Sermons - Moyer offers precise and practical advice on the importance of and techniques of attention-getting sermon illustrations.

Show Me How to Illustrate Evangelistic Sermons is on sale now for $19.95 (Reg. $29.95) Click here for details.

Take All 3 Volumes in the Show Me How Bundle for only $39.95 (Reg. $69.85). Click here.

The Bible History & Culture Bundle - On Sale through April 14

Gird your loins!” What does that phrase mean anyway? The answer to this question and thousands of others can be found in our Bible History & Culture Bundle. We’ve combined 4 outstanding history and culture books that will add a new level of understanding to your studies of the Bible. This 4-volume bundle includesManners and Customs of the Bible, The Land and the Book, Lands of the Bible and Historical Geography of the Holy Land. This bundle is normally priced at $85.55, but, through April 14, it’s only $19.95Just click here. Call 1-800-888-9898 and mention special offer 8119.

I hope you’ll add these helpful tools to your digital library today. I’m reminded each day that our ministry is to serve you and others whopreach and teach to change lives.

In His Service,

Jim Baird

Free Friday! Able to the Uttermost

AbleUttermostHappy Friday everyone! Today’s free download, usually $9.95, is Able to the Uttermost by Charles Spurgeon. Click here to download.

 Now, for a very short time this evening I have to call your attention to the advocacy of Christ, and you will notice in the text that there are three points worthy of your careful observation. The first is that the participators in the benefit are mentioned—”they that come unto God by Him.” Secondly, the benefit itself is mentioned, and the extent of it. “He is able to save unto the uttermost.” And then, thirdly, concerning the benefactor, we have a teaching with regard to the source of His power to save: “Seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.” Briefly, then, upon each head.

Able to the Uttermost is a collection of twenty sermons by Charles Haddon Spurgeon described when released in 1922 as “Forgotten” sermons that were not published in the original 63-volume Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit complete set (1855-1917).

Few people in history can be known by one name and have it ring true with their audience, and “Spurgeon” is one of them. Over time, Spurgeon has become known and revered as the “Prince of Preachers“. In the last 200 years he has been one of the most influential men for not only Preachers of the Gospel but for those who have not had the opportunity to hear and receive the Gospel message. He wrote tirelessly over his life, and WORDsearch Bible Software is committed to bring as many of Spurgeon’s works as possible to you in electronic form.

After you have read the book, we would love to hear what you thought in the Customer Reviews box on the bottom of the book’s page. Have you read anything that has inspired you lately? Let us know!