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Old 09-18-2010, 08:29 PM
Qin Shi Huangdi is offline
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Charles Spurgeon on Politics?


Charles Spurgeon was a Reformed Baptist clergyman in XIXth Century in Britain.

Charles Spurgeon's views on politics seems to have been conflicting to say the least. In 1861 he said the following (http://www.answersingenesis.org/arti...ship-in-heaven)
Quote:
5. Seeking the good of the country as aliens, we must also remember that it behooves aliens to keep themselves very quiet. What business have foreigners to plot against the government, or to intermeddle with the politics of a country in which they have no citizenship? An Englishman in New York had best be without a tongue just now; if he should criticise the courage of the generals, the accuracy of their despatches, or the genius of the President, he might meet with rather rough usage. He will be injudicious indeed, if he cannot leave America to the Americans. So, in this land of ours, where you and I are strangers, we must be orderly sojourners, submitting ourselves constantly to those who are in authority, leading orderly and peaceable lives, and, according to the command of the Holy Spirit through the apostle, “honouring all men, fearing God, honouring the king”; “submitting ourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake.” I cannot say that I delight in political Christians; I fear that party strife is a serious trial to believers, and I cannot reconcile our heavenly citizenship with the schemes of the hustings1 and the riot of the polling booth. You must follow your own judgment here, but for my part, I am a foreigner even in England, and as such I mean to act. We are simply passing through this earth, and should bless it in our transit, but never yoke ourselves to its affairs. An Englishman may happen to be in Spain — he wishes a thousand things were different from what they are, but he does not trouble himself much about them: he says, “If I were a Spaniard I would see what I could do to alter this government, but, being an Englishman, let the Spaniards see to their own matters. I shall be back to my own country by and by, and the sooner the better.” So with Christians here; they are content very much to let the potsherds strive with the potsherds of the earth; their politics concern their own country, they do not care much about any other; as men they love liberty, and are not willing to lose it even in the lower sense; but, spiritually, their politics are spiritual, and as citizens they look to the interest of that divine republic to which they belong, and they wait for the time when, having patiently borne with the laws of the land of their banishment, they shall come under the more benevolent sway of him who reigns in glory, the King of kings, and Lord of lords. If it is possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men, and still serve your day and generation, but do not build your soul’s dwelling place here, for all this earth must be destroyed at the coming of the fiery day.
Basically he said that since a Christian owes his first allegiance to Heaven and thus is a citizen of it, that while voting is a matter of individual conscience he personally disliked it and disapproved of it.

However there are some humourous anecdotes regarding Charles Spurgeon as a Whig: http://www.spurgeon.org/misc/abio081.htm

Quote:
The Pastor once had occasion to see Mr. Gladstone at Downing Street. Having asked for an interview of ten minutes, he arrived punctually, and, having transacted the business about which he had called, rose to leave directly the allotted time had expired. "The grand old man" was not willing to allow his visitor to go away so quickly;—though he said he wished others who called upon him would be as prompt both in arriving and departing;—and "the two prime ministers," as they were often designated, continued chatting for at good while longer. It was during the conversation which ensued that Mr. Spurgeon suggested to the great Liberal leader a grander measure of reform than any he had ever introduced;—his proposal was, that all the servants of the State, whether in the Church, the Army, the Navy, or the Civil Service, should be excluded from Parliament, just as the servants in a private family are not allowed to make the rules and regulations under which the household is governed. Possibly, archbishops, bishops, generals, admirals, noble lords, and right honorable gentlemen might imagine that this suggestion was a sample of Mr. Spurgeon's pure fun, but he introduced it to Mr. Gladstone with the utmost seriousness, and he often referred to it as a plan which would greatly and permanently benefit the whole nation, and which he believed his fellow-countrymen would adopt if it were laid before them by the great statesman to whom he submitted it.

The caricature on page 343, reproduced from Figaro's phrenological cartoons, shows one of the many instances in which Mr. Gladstone and Mr. Spurgeon were pictorially and amusingly associated, and it may therefore appropriately introduce a brief series, of—

POLITICAL PLEASANTRIES

On one of Mr. Spurgeon's visits to Mentone, a lady, who was a great admirer of Mr. Gladstone, asked the Pastor to guess the word which would explain the following riddle:—(1) What Mr. Gladstone likes; (2)what he does not like; (3) what he would like to do; and (4) where his enemies would like to put him. When Mr. Surgeon learned the solution of the puzzle, he was so pleased with it that he passed it on to other friends. The answers were,—(1) Reform; (2) a Tory; (3) to reform a Tory; and (4) in a reformatory!

During a General Election, it was discovered, one Monday morning, that the front gates and walls of "Helensburgh House" had been, in the course of the night, very plentifully daubed over with paint to correspond with the colors of the Conservative candidates for that division of Surrey. In speaking, at the Tabernacle, the same evening, concerning the disfigurement of his premises, Mr. Spurgeon said, "It is notorious that I am no Tory, so I shall not trouble to remove the paint; perhaps those who put it on will take it off when it has been there long enough to please them;" and, in due time, they did so.

The mention of a General Election recalls a characteristic anecdote which Mr. Spurgeon delighted to tell. He had gone to preach for his friend, Mr. John Offord, and, contrary to his almost universal practice, was a little late in arriving. He explained that: there had been a block on the road, which had delayed him; and, in addition, he had stopped on the way to vote. "To vote!" exclaimed the good man; "but, my dear brother, I thought you were a citizen of the New Jerusalem!" "So I am," replied Mr. Spurgeon, "but my 'old man' is a Citizen of this world." "Ah! but you should mortify your 'old man.'" "That is exactly what I did; for my 'old man' is a Tory, and I made him vote for the Liberals!"

At another General Election, it was widely reported that Mr. Spurgeon had declared that he would vote for the devil himself if he were a Liberal; and so many inquiries with regard to the statement came from all parts of the country, that a large number of post cards had to be printed and sent in reply. Those who had started or circulated the falsehood were probably somewhat ashamed when they read Mr. Spurgeon's emphatic denial: "I certainly should not vote for the devil under any circumstances, nor am I able to conceive of him as so restored as to become a Liberal. I think he has had a considerable hand in the invention of many a story which has of late been published concerning me."
So is the answer that his views on politics simply changed or was it that he held both viewpoints?
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Old 09-18-2010, 08:43 PM
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What is your question? (Obviously, I read your last line -- but define the two viewpoints you see contrasted here. I have a hunch it's varying vocabulary that may be confusing you.)
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Old 09-18-2010, 08:48 PM
Qin Shi Huangdi is offline
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Originally Posted by Polycarp View Post
What is your question? (Obviously, I read your last line -- but define the two viewpoints you see contrasted here. I have a hunch it's varying vocabulary that may be confusing you.)
Well in the first one Mr. Spurgeon basically said "I personally dislike politics and thus don't vote" but in the second he's shown to be a firm Whig and thus implied to vote (unless he didn't meet the property qualifications) or something? After all he didn't just say "I like the Liberals over the Tories".
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Old 10-26-2010, 04:59 PM
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Bumped bumped/
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Old 10-26-2010, 07:02 PM
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I don't see them all that much in conflict.

I took the first section not to mean that he didn't vote, but that he didn't do the whole political thing. When I think of someone as "political," I think of them sticking signs in their yards, trying to sway their neighbors to their side, attending rally, getting upset when others disagree with them, etc. Note he uses words like "strife" and "riot of the pollbooth." These are the types of actions that could cause divisions among congregations.


I don't see any evidence of those in the second section. Any references to him taking a side seem either very mild or almost used in jest.
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Old 10-26-2010, 07:38 PM
Diogenes the Cynic is offline
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Quote:
Charles Spurgeon was a Reformed Baptist clergyman in XIXth Century in Britain.
I'm not usually a grammar cop, but you seem to value literary precision and correctness so...

You don't use English ordinal endings ("-th") with Roman numerals. Just write the Roman numeral.


You don't write "Henry VIIIth" or "King James IIIrd," after all.
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Old 10-26-2010, 07:54 PM
Qin Shi Huangdi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diogenes the Cynic View Post
I'm not usually a grammar cop, but you seem to value literary precision and correctness so...

You don't use English ordinal endings ("-th") with Roman numerals. Just write the Roman numeral.


You don't write "Henry VIIIth" or "King James IIIrd," after all.
Thanks.
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