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The Bridge over the Road

by C. H. Spurgeon
From the May 1872 Sword and Trowel


LATELY RIDING THROUGH A PLEASANT COUNTRY the road passed along a hollow like a railway cutting, and overhead we observed a handsome bridge, by which the person who owned the property on both sides had connected the two portions of his garden. It was a simple but very convenient arrangement, and must have been greatly useful to all frequenters of the beautiful grounds. Time was when his friends could only perambulate half the garden, and were cut off from other guests whom they could see in the other portion of the grounds, which lay across the dividing chasm. So also the fair domain of truth was in years past divided between Arminians and Calvinists; the one traversed his own portion of truth and never went an inch beyond, while the other marched up and down his own division of doctrine and scowled over the great gulf at the opposite party. Both of these in their walks frequently strayed out of the garden, but for the most part they kept in it, and their great fault was that they dared not complete the range of the entire domain. Many attempts at uniting the truths held in common by both parties have been utter failures, because the projectors attempted to effect their design by reasoning, and by speculating about a middle term between divine sovereignty and human responsibility. At last, faith threw a bridge over the road by teaching men that where two truths are both revealed by inspiration they are equally to be believed, whether we can see their consistency or no. God is true in all that he reveals, whether the unity of his truth be apparent upon the surface, or lie concealed in mystery. By means of this bridge believers can now range the whole enclosure of gospel doctrine, and admire the wealth of the great Lord who planned the paradise of truth, and intended the whole of it for the comfort and enrichment of his friends. We are not now afraid of a truth because it is peculiarly prominent in the creed of the Hyper-Calvinists, nor are we alarmed at another Scriptural statement because it is most vigorously taught by the Wesleyans; if the doctrine be the truth of God we receive it with reverent faith, and if there be any other teachings of the Lord Jesus which we have not yet received, we wait at his feet with childlike desire to learn. To us truth is one and belongs to no party. By God's help we would walk with God through every glade of the garden of revelation, feeling as safe in one part thereof as in another.

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