I am the rose of Sharon. Song of Solomon 2:1

I am the rose of Sharon.
Song of Solomon 2:1

Whatever there may be of beauty in the material world, Jesus Christ possesses all that in the spiritual world in a tenfold degree. Amongst flowers the rose is deemed the sweetest, but Jesus is infinitely more beautiful in the garden of the soul than the rose can be in the gardens of earth. He takes the first place as the fairest among ten thousand. He is the sun, and all others are the stars; the heavens and the day are dark in comparison with him, for the King in his beauty transcends all. “I am the rose of Sharon.” This was the best and rarest of roses. Jesus is not “the rose” alone, he is “the rose of Sharon,” just as he calls his righteousness “gold,” and then adds, “the gold of Ophir”–the best of the best. He is positively lovely, and superlatively the loveliest. There is variety in his charms. The rose is delightful to the eye, and its scent is pleasant and refreshing; so each of the senses of the soul, whether it be the taste or feeling, the hearing, the sight, or the
spiritual smell, finds appropriate gratification in Jesus. Even the recollection of his love is sweet. Take the rose of Sharon, and pull it leaf from leaf, and lay by the leaves in the jar of memory, and you shall find each leaf fragrant long afterwards, filling the house with perfume. Christ satisfies the highest taste of the most educated spirit to the very full. The greatest amateur in perfumes is quite satisfied with the rose: and when the soul has arrived at her highest pitch of true taste, she shall still be content with Christ, nay, she shall be the better able to appreciate him. Heaven itself possesses nothing which excels the rose of Sharon. What emblem can fully set forth his beauty? Human speech and earth-born things fail to tell of him. Earth’s choicest charms commingled, feebly picture his abounding preciousness. Blessed rose, bloom in my heart forever!

Charles H. Spurgeon, Morning and Evening

Gifts for the Rebellious

Ask thy soul on which hand thou art likely to stand in the day of
judgment; on the right among the sheep, or on the left among the
goats? What will be the end of those joys which now make so glad
thy heart? Thou art now in the broad way to destruction and utter
separation from God’s presence for ever! Thy pleasures here we may
judge of; but O who can tell the thousandth part of those fiery
torments to which thou art liable in the other world! When thou
diest thou shalt be a damned creature; while thou livest thou art fed
like a beast by common Providence; thou art an utter stranger to
feeding promises. If thou lookest upwards, God is frowning, and his
wrath is revealed from heaven against thee. The heavens and their
host are ready every moment to discharge God’s curses like
thunderbolts against thee. If thou lookest downward, thou mayest
see hell opening its mouth to swallow thee up quick; many dangers
attending thee every day, many miseries every moment. Legions of
devils stand watching thee, and waiting only for the leave of God to
drag thy soul into the lake of fire. As long as thou refusest to hear
Christ’s voice, thou hast a hell upon earth. It is not the multitude of
thy companions that shall lessen thy torments; but they shall rather
increase them. Thy life that hath been full of worldly joy shall end
in deadly woe!

All you into whose hands this little book shall come, O let me beg
you to consider how your hearts can endure to think of being shut
out of heaven, out of blessedness for ever! Ask your heart these
questions. Can I burn? Can I endure the vengeance of eternal fire?
Will a glowing oven, a scorching furnace, be an easy lodging for me?
O why, my soul, wilt thou not be persuaded to repent? Is there too
much pain in that? Talk to thee of crucifying the flesh, or parting
with thy worldly companions, of entering in at the strait gate; O
these are hard sayings, who can bear them? But how wilt thou dwell
with devouring fire? How wilt thou dwell with everlasting burnings?

Think on hell, O poor soul, and then think on Christ; and consider if
a Redeemer from such misery be not worth the accepting of. Think
on hell, and then think on sin, and carnal pleasures; consider how
thou wilt relish them in the everlasting fire! Are these the price for
which thou sellest thy soul to hell? O bid these lusts and pleasures
be gone! bid your companion-sins be gone! and though you loved
them well, and have spent your time sinfully with them, yet tell
them you must not burn for them: that you will not damn your soul
to please your flesh.

O poor soul! Hast thou kept Christ out a long time, and art thou not
yet resolved to open thy heart to him? What shall I say to thee? Let
me say this—Christ waits still for thee; Christ is still willing to
receive thee! Why, then, wilt thou undo thyself by neglecting so
great a salvation? Think what message he sends to thee, what
errand he comes on; it is no dismal message, it is no dreadful
errand. If Christ had come to destroy thy soul, could he have had
less welcome than thou hast given him? O for thy soul’s sake
receive him! O ye fools, when will ye be wise? Come unto Jesus, and
he will have mercy on you, and heal all your backslidings, and love
you freely.

But, some poor soul will say, I have a desire to come to Christ, but I
am afraid Christ will never receive such a wretched sinner as I am,
who have stood out so long against him.

Ah poor soul, art thou willing to come to Christ? Then will Christ in
no wise cast thee out, if thou comest to him poor, and miserable,
and blind, and naked. O sinner, come not to him in thine own
strength! but come thou and say, O Lord, here is a poor soul not
worth any thing, O Lord, make me rich in faith! here is a miserable
soul, O Lord, have mercy on me! here is a poor blind soul, O Lord,
enlighten me from above! here is a poor naked wretch, O Lord, save
me, lest I perish, for I cannot help myself.

Come to Christ by believing in him. Yes, when thy poor soul is
sinking into hell, and sees no way to escape the fearful wrath of
God, O then at such a time seize fast hold on Christ! Come and
grasp him in the arms of thy faith, and say, I believe in thee, Lord;
help my unbelief. And the answer which thy Lord will give thee, will
be this—
Be it unto thee according as thou wilt. Let Christ be in your
hand, and the promise in your eye, and no doubt, though thou hast
been a rebel and a traitor, yet Jesus Christ, having received gifts for
the rebellious, will show mercy to thee, and receive thee.
—Samuel Rutherford.

Horatius Bonar, Kelso Tracts

The Lord taketh pleasure in his people. Psalm 149:4

The Lord taketh pleasure in his people.
Psalm 149:4

How comprehensive is the love of Jesus! There is no part of his people’s interests which he does not consider, and there is nothing which concerns their welfare which is not important to him. Not merely does he think of you, believer, as an immortal being, but as a mortal being too. Do not deny it or doubt it: “The very hairs of your head are all numbered.” “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.” It were a sad thing for us if this mantle of love did not cover all our concerns, for what mischief might be wrought to us in that part of our business which did not come under our gracious Lord’s inspection! Believer, rest assured that the heart of Jesus cares about your meaner affairs. The breadth of his tender love is such that you may resort to him in all matters; for in all your afflictions he is afflicted, and like as a father pitieth his children, so doth he pity you. The meanest interests of all his saints are all borne upon the broad
bosom of the Son of God. Oh, what a heart is his, that doth not merely comprehend the persons of his people, but comprehends also the diverse and innumerable concerns of all those persons! Dost thou think, O Christian, that thou canst measure the love of Christ? Think of what his love has brought thee–justification, adoption, sanctification, eternal life! The riches of his goodness are unsearchable; thou shalt never be able to tell them out or even conceive them. Oh, the breadth of the love of Christ! Shall such a love as this have half our hearts? Shall it have a cold love in return? Shall Jesus’ marvellous lovingkindness and tender care meet with but faint response and tardy acknowledgment? O my soul, tune thy harp to a glad song of thanksgiving! Go to thy rest rejoicing, for thou art no desolate wanderer, but a beloved child, watched over, cared for, supplied, and defended by thy Lord.

Charles H. Spurgeon, Morning and Evening