“For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.” Romans 5:6 (ESV)
The famous preacher Charles H. Spurgeon once gave a sermon on this very passage. To read the full transcript click on this link. The final section summarises the gist of his talk well:
‘I would not mind if I were condemned to live fifty years more, and never to be allowed to speak but these five words, if I might be allowed to utter them in the ear of every man, and woman, and child who lives.
“CHRIST DIED FOR THE UNGODLY” is the best message that even angels could bring to men.
In the proclamation of this the whole church ought to take its share. Those of us who can address thousands should be diligent to cry aloud—”Christ died for the ungodly“; but those of you who can speak to one, or write a letter to one, must keep on at this—”Christ died for the ungodly.”
Shout it out, or whisper it out; print it in capitals, or write it in a lady’s hand—”Christ died for the ungodly.”
Speak it solemnly, it is not a thing for jest. Speak it joyfully; it is not a theme for sorrow, but for joy.
Speak it firmly; it is indisputable fact. Facts of science, as they call them, are always questioned: this is unquestionable.
Speak it earnestly; for if there be any truth which ought to arouse all a man’s soul it is this: “Christ died for the ungodly.”
Speak it where the ungodly live, and that is at your own house. Speak it also down in the dark corners of the city, in the haunts of debauchery, in the home of the thief, in the den to the depraved.
Tell it in the gaol; and sit down at the dying bed and read in a tender whisper—”Christ died for the ungodly.”
When you pass the harlot in the street, do not give a toss with that proud head of yours, but remember that “Christ died for the ungodly“; and when you recollect those that injured you, say no bitter word, but hold your tongue, and remember “Christ died for the ungodly.”
Make this henceforth the message of your life—”Christ died for the ungodly.”
And, oh, dear friends, you that are not saved, take care that you receive this message. Believe it. Go to God with this on your tongue—”Lord save me, for Christ died for the ungodly, and I am of them.” Fling yourself right on to this as a man commits himself to his lifebelt amid the surging billows.
“But I do not feel,” says one. Trust not your feelings if you do; but with no feelings and no hopes of your own, cling desperately to this, “Christ died for the ungodly.” The transforming, elevating, spiritualising, moralising, sanctifying power of this great fact you shall soon know and be no more ungodly; but first, as ungodly, rest you on this, “Christ died for the ungodly.”
Accept this truth, my dear hearer, and you are saved. I do not mean merely that you will be pardoned, I do not mean that you will enter heaven, I mean much more; I mean that you will have a new heart; you will be saved from the love of sin, saved from drunkenness, saved from uncleanness, saved from blasphemy, saved from dishonesty.
“Christ died for the ungodly“—if that be really known and trusted in, it will open in your soul new springs of living water which will cleanse the Augean stable of your nature, and make a temple of God of that which was before a den of thieves.
Trust in the mercy of God through the death of Jesus Christ, and a new era in your life’s history will at once commence.’
I need not add anything more. Spurgeon has said it far more eloquently than I ever could.
prayer : that all would know that “Christ died for the ungodly”
action : change my iPhone signature to include this verse