In his introductory essay to this selection from the writing and preaching of C.H. Spurgeon, Helmut Thielicke – himself among the best preachers of the twentieth century – expresses his surprise and delight at his discovery of the great Victorian preacher. He draws out those qualities which made Spurgeon one of the most influential ministers of his day, and explains what it was that attracted him to the self-educated Baptist preacher. They share a recognition of the urgency of their message: “We stand in need of the simple way in which Spurgeon dares to say that what really and ultimately counts is to save sinners.”
Warmth, immediacy and directness are the hallmarks of Spurgeon; qualities which Thielicke’s own remarkable sermons share but which he felt much preaching of his day lacked. It is still a convincing testament to Spurgeon’s continuing vitality and relevance that Thielicke, one of the greatest modern preachers, should say, “Sell all that you have … and buy Spurgeon.”
Originally translated by the American Lutheran theologian John W. Doberstein, this reprinted edition of Encounter with Spurgeon was published to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of Helmut Thielicke’s death.