Morning, March 27, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“Then all the disciples left Him and fled.” — Matthew 26:56
He never deserted them, but they, in cowardly fear for their lives, fled from him in the very beginning of his sufferings. This is but one instructive instance of the frailty of all believers if left to themselves; they are only like sheep at the best, and they flee when the wolf comes. They had all been warned of the danger and had promised to die rather than leave their Master; and yet they were seized with sudden panic, and took to their heels. It may be that I, at the opening of this day, have braced up my mind to bear a trial for the Lord’s sake, and I imagine myself to be certain to exhibit perfect faithfulness; but let me be very suspicious of myself, for fear that having the same evil heart of unbelief, I should depart from my Lord as the apostles did. It is one thing to promise, and quite another to perform. It would have been to their eternal honor to have stood at Jesus’ side right bravely; but they fled from honor; may I be kept from imitating them! Where else could they have been so safe as near their Master, who could at any time call for twelve legions of angels? They fled from their true safety. O God, let me not play the fool also. Divine grace can make the coward brave. The smoking wick can flame forth like fire on the altar when the Lord wills it. These very apostles who were timid as hares, grew to be bold as lions after the Spirit had descended upon them, and even so the Holy Spirit can make my untrustworthy spirit to bravely confess my Lord and witness for his truth.
What anguish must have filled the Savior as he saw his friends so faithless! This was one bitter ingredient in his cup of suffering; but that cup is drained dry; let me not put another drop in it. If I forsake my Lord, I shall crucify him again, and put him to open shame. Keep me, O blessed Spirit, from an end so dishonorable.