“…it was assuredly a work of grace, for we are expressly told, “whose heart the Lord opened.” She did not open her own heart. Her prayers did not do it; Paul did not do it; the Lord himself must open the heart, to receive the things which make for our peace.” ~ C.H.S.
“And on the Sabbath day we went outside the gate to the riverside, where we supposed there was a place of prayer, and we sat down and spoke to the women who had come together. One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul.”—Acts 16:13-14.
1. Lydia’s conversion in itself – 4:13
2. In contrast with another – 22:26
3. In comparison with that other – 32:09
4. As a model of conversions in our day – 36:20
The following are select quotes from this sermon.
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…it was assuredly a work of grace, for we are expressly told, “whose heart the Lord opened.” She did not open her own heart. Her prayers did not do it; Paul did not do it; the Lord himself must open the heart, to receive the things which make for our peace. To operate savingly upon human hearts belongs to God alone. We can get at human brains, but God alone can arouse human affections. We may reach them, we grant you, in the natural and common way, but so to reach them, as that the enemy of God shall become his friend, and that the stony heart shall be turned into flesh, is the work of grace, and nothing short of divine power can accomplish it.
“Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord.” He alone can cut the bands which fasten the heart; he alone can put the key into the hole of the door and open it, and get admittance for himself. He is the heart’s master as he is the heart’s maker, and conversion in every case is the Lord’s work alone.
Brethren, I do not think much of a conversion where it does not touch a man’s substance; and those people who pretend to be Christ’s people, and yet live only for themselves, and do nothing for him or for his Church, give but sorry evidence of having been born again. A love to the people of God has ever been a distinguishing mark of the true convert.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon