Saturday, November 20, 2010

Spurgeon on the Vagaries of Emotionalism

I’ve been reading Iain Murray’s excellent book The Old Evangelicalism: Old Truths for a New Awakening (Banner, 2005) this week.

In a chapter titled “Spurgeon and True Conversion,” Murray shares this Spurgeon anecdote on the vagaries of emotionalism:

A young preacher once remarked, “Were you not greatly struck to see so large a congregation weeping?” “Yes,” said his judicious friend, “but I was more struck with the reflection that they would probably have wept more at a play” (p. 52).

I shared this quote with a friend this week, and he told about a conversation he had with someone arguing for the priority of music over preaching in worship. His conversation partner noted in advocacy for the power of music that when he sang certain songs in worship his eyes always filled with tears. My friend replied, “Yes, but remember that unconverted men cried after 9/11 when they heard ‘Amazing Grace.’”


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