None eye pitied you, to do any of these to you, to have compassion on you; but you were cast out in the open field…
I. A survey of THE MISERY OF MAN'S ESTATE. The verse presents to us an infant exposed to die. All the common offices that were necessary for its life and health have been forgotten.
1. At the very first glance, we remark, here is an early ruin. It is an infant. A thousand sorrows that one so young should be so deeply taught in misery's school! It is an infant; it has not yet tasted joy, but yet it knoweth pain and sorrow to the full. How early art thou blasted, O sweet flower! From the very birth we go astray, speaking lies, and in the very birth we lie under the condemnation of the law of God.
2. The next very apparent teaching of the text is utter inability. It is an infant — what can it do for itself? Not even clay on the potter's wheel is more helpless than this infant as it now lies cast out in the open field. Such is human nature; it can by no means help towards its own restoration. But, mark you, and this is a thought that may crush our boastings and make us hang our head like a bulrush evermore — this inability is our own sin.
3. Apparent, too, is yet a third misfortune — we are utterly friendless. "None eye pitied thee, to do any of these things unto thee." We have no friend in heaven or in earth that can do aught for us, unless God shall interpose. Weep and lament your kinsfolk may for you, but no lamentation can make an atonement for your sins, no human tears can cleanse your filthiness, no Christian zeal can clothe you with righteousness, no yearning love can sanctify your nature.
4. Furthermore, our text very clearly reveals to us that we are by nature in a sad state of exposure. Cast out into the open field, left in a wilderness where it is not likely that any should pass by, thrown where the cold can smite by night and the heat can blast by day, left where the wild beast goeth about, seeking whom he may devour — such is the estate of human nature: unclothed, unarmed, helpless, exposed to all manner of ravenous destroyers. O Lord God, Thou alone knowest the awful dangers which prowl around an unregenerate man; what mischiefs waylay him; what crimes beset him; what follies haunt him.
5. It seems that this child, besides being in this exposed state, was loathsome. "Thou wast cast out to the loathing of thy person." It was in such a condition that the sight of it was disgusting, and its person was so destitute of all comeliness that it was absolutely loathed. Such is man by nature.
6. We close this fearful description by observing the certain ruin to which this infant was exposed, as setting forth the sure destruction of every man if grace prevent not.
II. We are now to search for MOTIVES FOR GOD'S GRACE, and we have a very difficult search before us when we look to this infant which is cast out, because its loathsomeness and its being covered with its own blood, forbid us at once to hope that there can be anything in it which can merit the esteem of the merciful One. Let us think of some of the motives which may urge men to assist the undeserving.
1. One of the first would be, necessity. Not a few are placed in such a position that they could not well refuse to give their help when it is asked of them. But no necessity can ever affect the Most High. The first of all causes must be absolutely independent of every other cause. Who dictateth counsel to the Most High? Who sits at His bar, and giveth Him advice and warning, and maketh Him do according to his pleasure? Nor had God any necessity in order to make Himself happy or to increase His glory.
2. In this case there was nothing in the birth of this child, in its original parentage, that could move the passer-by. You were conceived in sin, and stained in your very birth, and there is, therefore, nothing here that could move the heart of Deity.
3. Nor was there anything in this child's beauty, for it was loathsome. What can there be in a worm to gratify the Almighty?
4. Furthermore, as we have found no motive yet, either in necessity or the child's birth or beauty, so we find none in any entreaties that were uttered by this child. It doth not seem that it pleaded with the passer-by to save it, for it could not as yet speak. So, though sinners do pray, yet when a sinner prays, it is because God has begun to save him.
5. Yet, further, it does not appear that the pity of the passer-by was shown upon this child because of any future service which was expected of it. This child, it seems, was nourished, clothed, luxuriously decorated; and yet, after all that, if you read the chapter through, you will find it went astray from Him who had set His heart upon it. The Lord foresaw this, and yet" loved that child notwithstanding.
III. But now consider THE MANDATE OF HIS MERCY. "I said unto thee, Live."
I. This fiat of God is majestic. He looks, and there lies an infant, loathsome in its blood; He stops, and He pronounces the word, the royal word "Live." There speaks a God. Who but He could venture thus to deal with life and dispense it with a single syllable? 'Tis majestic, 'tis Divine!
2. This fiat is manifold.
(1) Here is judicial life.
(2) It is, moreover, spiritual life.
3. It is an irresistible voice. When God says to a sinner, "Live," all the devils in hell cannot keep him in the grave.
4. It is all-sufficient. "Live," dost Thou say, great God? Why, the man is dead! There is life — not in him, but in the voice that bids him live. "Live," dost Thou say? "By this time he stinketh, for he hath been dead four days!" There is power — not in his corruption, but in the voice that crieth, "Come forth!"
5. It was a mandate of free grace. I want to lay that down again, and again, and again, that there was nothing in this infant, nothing but loathsomeness, nothing therefore to merit esteem; nothing in the infant, but inability, nothing therefore by which it could help itself; nothing in it but infancy, nothing therefore by which it could plead for itself, and yet grace said, "Live" — freely, without any bribe, without any entreaty, said, "Live." And so when sinners are saved, it is only and solely because God will do it, to magnify His free, unpurchased, unsought grace.
( C. H. Spurgeon.)
Parallel VersesKJV: None eye pitied thee, to do any of these unto thee, to have compassion upon thee; but thou wast cast out in the open field, to the lothing of thy person, in the day that thou wast born.