Charles Haddon Spurgeon was born on June 19, 1834 at Kelvedon, Essex in England. He was the first of seventeen children in his family. Known as The Prince of Preachers, Spurgeon’s sermons were used of God to breathe life into countless people. In honor of his birthday, note the circumstances of two conversions that happened – one before his sermon and the other after.
Before the Sermon
On one occasion Spurgeon was to preach in a large agricultural hall. Prior to the time of his preaching, he stepped to the location at which he would stand so as to test the acoustics of the building.
Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.
This statement echoed the words of John the Baptist when John saw Jesus approaching him. The text is found in John 1:29.
As the word of God pointing to Christ echoed in the agricultural hall, a worker was located high in the rafters. He heard this booming call, and as a result was converted to Christ.
After the Sermon
Spurgeon’s sermons were printed and in 1865 over 25,000 copies were sold every week. One collection of his sermons has been gathered into a 63 volume set.
On one particular day, a lady purchased some butter. The proprietor wrapped the butter in a single page of one of Spurgeon’s sermons. The lady not only used the butter, but she read the partial sermon. As a result of the reading, she was converted.
His Own Conversion
Here was a preacher who constantly pointed men to Christ. He never forgot his own conversion. At the age of 15, a substitute lay preacher was preaching at the Primitive Methodist Chapel on Artillery Street amid a snowstorm. The storm had diverted Spurgeon to the church. As his text, the preacher read this passage.
Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is none else.
The preacher repeatedly quoted the verse during his sermon. At one point, he stopped and pointed in Spurgeon’s direction and said,
That young man there looks very miserable…
Look! Look, young man! Look now!
Then I had this vision–not a vision to my eyes, but to my heart. I saw what a Savior Christ was…Now I can never tell you how it was, but I no sooner saw whom I was to believe than I also understood what it was to believe, and I did believe in one moment.
Whether it was this sermon he heard, whether it was the acoustic testing in a hall or whether it was the printed page of his sermon, Spurgeon knew the value of pointing men to Christ.