In 1857, Charles Spurgeon—the most popular preacher in the Victorian world—promised his readers that he would publish his earliest sermons. For almost 160 years, these sermons have been lost to history. Beginning next January, B&H Academic will start releasing a multi-volume set that includes full-color reproductions, transcriptions, introductions, and editorial annotations. Written for scholars, pastors, and students alike, The Lost Sermons of C.H. Spurgeon will add approximately 10% more material to Spurgeon’s body of literature and will be the first critical edition of any of Spurgeon’s works.
In the introduction to an early release sampler we’ve put together, Dr. Christian George, editor, explains the remarkable impact Spurgeon had during his lifetime. Reading this, one begins to understand why Spurgeon’s influence continues to this day. He writes,
Charles Haddon Spurgeon was the most popular preacher in the Victorian world. Within ten years of accepting the pastorate of the New Park Street Chapel in London, the dwindling congregation expanded to become the largest church in Protestant Christendom. Even the most spacious venues in world’s most cosmopolitan city—the Surrey Garden Music Hall, Exeter Hall, and the Crystal Palace—could not adequately accommodate the large crowds who sought to hear the young, newfangled, Baptist preacher. Spurgeon’s conversational and picture-packed preaching stood in high relief against the “monotonous” and “dull” sermons of his day. The preacher “must preach Christ so plainly,” wrote Spurgeon, “that his hearers can not only understand him, but that they cannot misunderstand him even if they try to do so.”
By 1892, Spurgeon had spawned sixty-six parachurch ministries: a theological college, two orphanages, a book fund, a clothing drive, a Sunday school for the blind, and a ministry to policemen, among dozens more. Over 14,000 baptisms were recorded by the end of his ministry. Spurgeon’s baritone voice could reach crowds of three thousand or twenty-three thousand—a throwback to the days of George Whitefield, Jonathan Edwards, and John Wesley. Spurgeon’s printed sermons were translated into nearly forty languages including German, Gaelic, Swedish, Welsh, and Portuguese . . .
Spurgeon’s popularity in the pulpit was matched only by his productivity with the press. By 1892, Spurgeon had published more words in the English language than any other Christian in history: sixty-two volumes of sermons, a monthly magazine, approximately 140 books, and a commentary on the Psalms that took twenty years to complete. The sum of Spurgeon’s published words exceeded those found in the famed 1875-89 ninth edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica. Every week, Spurgeon internalized six meaty books, preached three to ten times, and constantly switched hats among pastor, president, editor, author, and evangelist. After thirty-eight years in London, Spurgeon had proclaimed the gospel of Jesus Christ to an estimated ten million people, and that without the aid of television, radio, or the Internet. . .
To learn more about Spurgeon, and to take a guided tour through his never-before-published sermons, you can preorder The Lost Sermons of C.H. Spurgeon from LifeWay, Amazon, and Christianbook.com. For an early preview, please check out our free sampler.