Acts 2:40
With many other words he testified, and he urged them, "Be saved from this corrupt generation."
Much Exhortation is NeededC. H. Spurgeon.Acts 2:40
Salvation from an Untoward GenerationBp. Hall.Acts 2:40
Save YourselvesC. H. Spurgeon.Acts 2:40
Save Yourselves -- WhyJ. Z. Tyler.Acts 2:40
Saving Ourselves from a Crooked GenerationH. S. Trumbull.Acts 2:40
UntowardnessR. W. Evans, B.D.Acts 2:40
The Day of Pentecost, and its Immediate GiftsP.C. Barker Acts 2:1-41
A New Style of Religious MinistryD. Thomas, D. D.Acts 2:14-40
A Sermon to Prick the ConscienceJ. C. Jones.Acts 2:14-40
A Varied Ministry Blessed by the Holy SpiritC. H. Spurgeon.Acts 2:14-40
Different Styles of PreachingW. Arthur, M. A.Acts 2:14-40
Elements of Power in Peter's SermonHomiletic MonthlyActs 2:14-40
Peter's Impulsiveness Useful Because Wisely DirectedW. H. Blake.Acts 2:14-40
Plain PreachingActs 2:14-40
Preaching on the Day of PentecostJ. Thompson, A. M.Acts 2:14-40
St. Peter to the MultitudeD. Fraser, D. D.Acts 2:14-40
St. Peter's First SermonG. T. Stokes, D. D.Acts 2:14-40
The First Apostolic Appeal to the MultitudeW. Hudson.Acts 2:14-40
The First SermonDean Vaughan.Acts 2:14-40
The Power of the Human VoiceJ. Parker.Acts 2:14-40
The SceneW. Arthur, M. A.Acts 2:14-40
The Gospel According to PeterW. Clarkson Acts 2:37-40
A Famous ConversionBp. Brownrigg.Acts 2:37-42
A Sermon Without an ApplicationBishop Home.Acts 2:37-42
A True Saving Conviction of SinE. Cooper.Acts 2:37-42
Awakened SinnersW. Hudson.Acts 2:37-42
Being Pricked to the HeartActs 2:37-42
ConversionHomilistActs 2:37-42
Evangelical PreachingTheological Sketch-bookActs 2:37-42
Heart-Work God's WorkR. Baxter.Acts 2:37-42
Honest PreachingActs 2:37-42
Life-WoundsActs 2:37-42
On Being Pricked to the HeartActs 2:37-42
Only God Can Heal the Wounds He MakesHandbook of IllustrationActs 2:37-42
Powerful PreachingE. Paxton Hood.Acts 2:37-42
Reaching the HeartScottish Christian HeraldActs 2:37-42
Revival PreachersJ. Jenkyn.Acts 2:37-42
Rightly Dividing the Word of TruthW. Arnot, D. D.Acts 2:37-42
The Day of Spiritual WondersR.A. Redford Acts 2:37-42
The Effects of Gospel PreachingJ. Parker, D. D.Acts 2:37-42
The Effusion of the Holy SpiritJ. Saurin.Acts 2:37-42
The Gospel to be Preached to the HeartActs 2:37-42
The Great Question and the Inspired AnswerJ. M. Allis.Acts 2:37-42
The Operations of TruthProfessor Caird.Acts 2:37-42
The Results of Revivals not All KnownActs 2:37-42
The Truth the Sword of the SpiritJ. A. Wallace.Acts 2:37-42
We Must Preach to the Consciences of MenL. A. Banks.Acts 2:37-42
Effects of the Divine Power Upon the HeartE. Johnson Acts 2:37-47
The First Practice of Baptism as a Christian RiteP.C. Barker Acts 2:38, 41
For to you is the promise, etc.

I. Consider it as the NEED of man, and the fulfillment of that whole dispensation of mercy under which man was placed when he fell.

1. Trace it through the bestowments of the Old Testament, and show that while God was ever bestowing his Spirit, both in special manifestations as in the inspiration of his messengers, and in individual life, yet the requirement of man was that in connection with a larger communication of truth and redeeming love there should be the lifting up of humanity itself, of the spirits of men by Divine gifts.

2. Show that such is God's method always. With gifts from without he sends gifts within. The gifts of science and discovery accompany an elevation of the mind and life of the world. Moreover, it is a Divine gift to be able to speak for Christ.

II. Consider the EXTENT AND APPLICATION of the promise.

1. Apart from all restrictions of human merit. To the crucifiers of Jesus - for God is merciful; to the Jew, notwithstanding his abuse of special privileges; to the Gentile, notwithstanding ignorance and degradation.

2. Apart from all restrictions of age. To the children as well as to the adults; to the families as well as the heads of households: for though the word "children" does not necessarily denote infants, it does not exclude them, and in such ways as by the analogy of Scripture we can interpret the "promise to the children," the word applies to the youngest. The Jew might well understand it as a covenant, which, like that of circumcision, was applied in its signs to the infant.

3. Wider than the utmost limits of human knowledge and belief. It is not for us, as it was not for the Apostle Peter, to say "whom the Lord our God should call." He has no respect of persons. He calls those whom we should not call. Peter himself was soon taught that God's purposes cannot be judged by man. The universality of the Spirit is the basis of all missionary efforts - the bond of the true Church. - R.

Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
Concerning salvation, we need only preach one sermon by way of explanation, but men need ten sermons by way of exhortation.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

Let the word of God be like one who, during the great flood in America, rode on a white horse down the valley, crying out, as he rode along, "To the hills, to the hills, to the hills!" The waters were following fast behind him, and he would have the people escape to the mountains, lest they should be destroyed. Oh, precious Book, thus bid me seek the hills! Ring the alarm bell in my ear, and compel me to flee from the wrath to come. Day and night, wherever I may be, may a word from the oracle of God sound in my ears, and keep me from sleeping on the bank of the abyss! May no enemy be able to steal upon us when sleeping in false security, for it is high time that we awake out of sleep, and this Book tells us so.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

? —

1. Because of the danger in which every unforgiven sinner stands.

2. Because ample means have been provided for the salvation of every one.

3. Because the providing means are unavailing unless we use them.

4. Because in this important matter each one must act for himself.

5. Because if you suffer yourself to be lost it will be deliberate spiritual suicide.

(J. Z. Tyler.)

Untoward is said of anything which will not go toward, that is straight onwards, but will go now on this side, now on that, making a crooked path. The beast that rebels against the hand of its driver, pushes now in this direction, now in that, instead of that in which he is required to go. The slimy serpent that crawls along, never in one line, but from this side to that side. The man who knows not his road, takes a path now to the right hand, now to the left, and goes not straight forward. The drunkard who reels and staggers from side to side, instead of going forward. All these are examples of untowardness. And now is not sin untoward? The path of the commandments of God leads straightforward, but their transgressor is not found in that path. He has the wilfulness and rebelliousness of the beast that will not be driven. He is a true and close follower of the crooked ways of the old serpent, and walks in his slime of sin. He is ignorant and blind with vanity, and chooses:his own crooked road. He is drunk with pride and evil desires, and cannot keep the straight paths of godliness. Such is the character of an untoward generation. In it are found the drunkard, the unchaste, the swearer, the Sabbath-breaker, the thief, the covenant-breaker, the forswearer; and not only these, but all who hold not the truth in righteousness, all who abide in any practice which (they know) is not according to the will of God; all who continue in the neglect of any known duty, all who give God but lip-service instead of life-service, all the careless, all the indifferent, all the selfish.

(R. W. Evans, B.D.)

I. PETER'S ATTESTATION. What is a generation? All that are contained in one list of time — fixed: Seridas under reckons it at seven years, but the ordinary rate is a hundred (Genesis 15:16) — uncertain; so Solomon, "One generation passeth, another cometh." It is with men as rasps: one stalk is growing up, another grown, a third withered, and all upon one root. You see your condition; there is no staying here. Make no other account, but with David to serve your generation, and away. An untoward generation is one froward, perverse, crooked. Let us note —

1. A negative fowardness.(1) No matters of belief. This is what our Saviour rebuked the two disciples for. The stiff neck, the uncircumcised ear, the fat heart, the blinded eye, the obdurate soul, are expressions of it. If these Jews, then, after the manifest proofs of Christ's Messiahship disbelieved and rejected Him, most justly are they a froward generation. And so is any nation that follows them in their peevish incredulity, shutting their eyes to gospel light, like that Indian tree, which closes itself against the beams of the rising sun, and opens only to the shades of night. It is neither shame nor wonder for those to stumble who walk in darkness, but for a man to stumble with the sun in his face is so much more hateful, as the occasion is more willing.(2) In .action, i.e., when a nation fails palpably in those duties of piety, justice, charity, which the royal law of their God requires.

2. Positive. In matter of faith maintaining impiety, heresy, superstition, atheism, and whatever other intellectual wickedness; in matter of fact maintaining idolatry, violation of God's day and ordinances, drunkenness, thefts, or any other actual rebellion against God. Whatever succession of men abounds in these is an untoward generation. That which makes a man untoward makes a generation so, for what is a generation but a resultarian of men? But let not our zeal make us uncharitable. Never time was so bad but God left some gracious remainders. But these few, if they give a blessing to the times, cannot give a style.

3. Let me commend three emerging considerations.(1) The irreparable wrong and reproach that lewd men bring upon the times in which they live. It were happy if the injury of a wicked man could be confined to his own bosom; but his lewdness is like some odious scent diffused through the whole place where he lives. There were worthy saints in St. Peter's time, yet the apostle brands them with being "an untoward generation." It is not in the virtue of a few to drown the wickedness of the more. If we come into a field that hath plenty of corn, notwithstanding the poppies, etc., we still call it cornfield; but if we come upon a barn floor, where there are a few grains among a heap of chaff, we do not call it a corn heap. Thus it is with times and nations, a little good is not seen amongst much ill; a righteous Lot cannot make his city to be no Sodom. A wicked man is a perfect contagion to his age. Hear this, then, ye glorious sinners, who brag that your heads, purses, hands, are pressed for the public good — are your hearts godless, your lives filthy? Your sins do more disservice to your country than yourselves are worth. "Sin is a shame to any people."(2) The difference of terms in respect of the degrees of evil. Never generation was so straight as not to be distorted with some powerful sins; but there are degrees in this distortion. In the first world there were giants (Genesis 4:4) which, as our mythologists add, "bid battle unto heaven." In the next there were mighty hunters and proud Babel builders; after them followed beastly Sodomites. It were easy to draw the pedigree of evils through all times; yet some generation is more eminently sinful than another; as the sea is in perpetual agitation, yet the spring tides rise higher than their fellows. Hence Peter notes his generation with an emphasis of mischief; and what age could compare with that which crucified Christ?(3) The warrant of the free censure of ill-deserving times. It is a peevish humour that aggravates the evils of the times, which, were they better than they are, would still be decried. But it is the warrantable duty of Peter and his successors when they meet with a froward generation to call it so, although we may be called querulous Micaiahs. Well might Peter do so: his Master did it before him, and the Baptist before Him, and the prophets on every page. And why may we not follow Peter? Who should tell the times of their sins if we be silent?

II. HIS OBTESTATION, "Save yourselves." The remedy is of a short sound, but of a long extent. The saving comprises in it three great duties.

1. Repentance for our sin. Surely those sins are not ours of which we have repented. The skin that is washed is as clean as if it had never been foul. The waters of our tears are the streams of Jordon to cure our leprosy, of Siloam to cure our blindness, of Bethesda to cure our lameness and defects of obedience.

2. Avoidance of sinners; not indeed in natural matters, such as breathing the same air, etc., nor in matters of business, nor in such spiritual matters as attending the services of God, but in their evil deeds (Ephesians 5. ff.). If we would save ourselves from the sin of the time we may not command it, counsel it, consent to it, soothe it, further it, share in it, dissuade it not, resist it not, reveal it not.

3. Reluctation to sin and sinners. We must set our faces against it to discountenance it, our tongues against it to control it, our hands against it to oppose it.

III. OUR DISSUASIVE FROM THE DANGER IMPLIED IN THE WORD "SAVE," for how are we saved but from danger. The danger here is that of —

1. Corruption. One yawning mouth makes many. This pitch will defile us. St. Paul makes that verse of the heathen poet canonical. "Evil communications corrupt good manners."

2. Confusion (Numbers 16:26). The very station, the very touch is mortal. If we share in the work, why not in the wages? "The wages of sin is death."

(Bp. Hall.)

A man ought not to be carried to hell by his surroundings. Many a man has lived in a crooked generation, and adapted himself to it most completely. And many a man has lived in a crooked generation, and kept straight all the way through it. If your generation is crooked, that is no reason why you should be. But if you would keep straight in this generation, or in any other, you have got something to do about it. Your responsibility is for yourself, in spite of your generation. If your generation is crooked, see that; you don't crook with it.

(H. S. Trumbull.)

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