Evening, September 17, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“Encourage him.” — Deuteronomy 1:38
God employs his people to encourage one another. He did not say to an angel, “Gabriel, my servant Joshua is about to lead my people into Canaan–go, encourage him.” God never works needless miracles; if his purposes can be accomplished by ordinary means, he will not use a miraculous agency. Gabriel would not have been half so well fitted for the work as Moses. A brother’s sympathy is more precious than an angel’s mission. The angel, swift of wing, knows the Master’s bidding better the people’s temperament. An angel had never experienced the hardness of the road, nor seen the fiery serpents, nor had he led the stubborn multitude in the wilderness as Moses had done. We should be glad that God usually works for man, by man. It forms a bond of brotherhood, and being mutually dependent on one another, we are fused more completely into one family. Brethren, take the text as God’s message to you. Labor to help others, and especially strive to encourage them. Talk encouragingly to the young and anxious enquirer; lovingly try to remove stumbling blocks out of his way. When you find a spark of grace in his heart, kneel down and blow it into a flame. Leave the young believer to discover the roughness of the road by degrees, but tell him of the strength which dwells in God, of the sureness of the promise, and of the charms of communion with Christ. Aim to comfort the sorrowful, and to speak life to the despondent. Speak a word in season to him that is weary, and encourage those who are fearful, to go on their way with gladness. God encourages you by his promises; Christ encourages you as he points to the heaven he has won for you, and the spirit encourages you as he works in you to will and to do of his own will and pleasure. Imitate divine wisdom, and encourage others, according to the word of this evening.