C. H. Spurgeon’s Forgotten Prayer Meeting Addresses
Comp. Terence Peter Crosby
304 pages, £15.00
Star rating: 4 stars
Intended as a sequel, of sorts, to the readily-available Only a Prayer Meeting!, this volume draws together 37 addresses, many of them delivered at Metropolitan Tabernacle prayer meetings, though with a selection of other ‘forgotten’ sermons.
In the former category, three features stand out: intimacy, transparency and variety. Intimacy, because these take us into the beating heart of a living church, giving us a sense of reality in a steady but demanding pattern of activity. Transparency, because Spurgeon’s humanity and own spirit of prayer ooze out of the pages, letting us peer through the windows of his own soul as a man who walked with God and revealing some of the ways in which he thought and felt. Variety, because – as well as the scope of the included sermons preached on various days and occasions – one gets a sense of responsiveness and flexibility as Spurgeon addresses the people in front of him, taking his cue from particular prayers, hymns, circumstances, events and Scriptures brought to mind.
All in all, the whole breathes a devotional spirit, provides much direct and incidental counsel on prayer, places Christ at the centre of all things, embraces throughout that happy and holy tension between divine sovereignty and human responsibility, reveals the range of Scriptural concerns in a working church, and promotes vigorous religion of the truest kind.
Fascinating, challenging, encouraging, stirring, and rebuking, this book – imbibed with a readiness to consider whether or not there are legitimate ways and means to enliven our own prayers and prayer meetings – will do any earnest reader a power of good.