The “first” words I wish I spoke

On the journey of planting Damascus Road Church, there have been a lot of “firsts.”  There was the first set up, first public service, the first worship set, and the first communion.  There were the first leaders, the first elders, the first converts, the first members, and the first baptisms.  I remember the first “Amen”, the first mean email, the first stupid decision, the first confrontation, the first church discipline, even the first people who left.  Then there is the first big move into a new building, the first roots put down, the first “home.”  What I don’t remember are what the first words preached at our new building were.  I’m sure they are recorded but the fact that I don’t remember them means I didn’t try to make them memorable. Quite honestly, I don’t think I really considered those as a “first”, didn’t try to make them “special”, or otherwise meaningful.

Reading a biography on Charles Spurgeon recently, made we wish I had.  The author includes many excerpts from Spurgeon’s sermons and conversations in this book.  He also includes the first words Charles Spurgeon spoke in their new building known as the Metropolitan Tabernacle.  If I could go back in time a year and 9 months, these are the first words I would have endeavored to imitate:

I would propose that the subject of the ministry in this house, as long as this platform shall stand, and as long as this house shall be frequented by worshippers, shall be the person of Jesus Christ.   I am never ashamed to avow myself a Calvinist…but if I am asked what is my creed, I reply, ‘It is Jesus Christ’…Jesus, who is the sum and substance of the Gospel, who is in Himself all theology, the incarnation of every precious truth, the all-glorious personal embodiment of the way, the truth, and the life.” (The Sword and Trowel, 1861)


Author: Sam Ford

Sam Ford is a preacher, planter, and pastor from the Pacific Northwest. He is currently pastoring Restoration Road Church in Snohomish, WA.

5 thoughts on “The “first” words I wish I spoke”

  1. What do you think of the idea of having a ‘Classical Sermon’ series? A series where the elders preach a famous sermon by Spurgeon, Edwards or some others in our past. You know, stand there and read ‘Sinners in the hands of an angry God’ (maybe with a little commentary mixed in). I think it would be kool. We DO sing old hymns.


  2. Sam: I so love your heart and your passion for Christ. Thank you, again, for being a pastor who is Christ-centered and not man-centered. Thank you for preaching Truth. I just don’t think you know how much some of us appreciate you — after what we have seen in other churches. God Bless You. Press on!


  3. I am not sure, but I may have been the first to preach at the new space. If so I am certainly no Spurgeon.

    If not it was likely, this sermon…

    I took a quick minute to listen to the first few minutes and nearly wept as the first words would have been praying for Carys when she was at Children’s Hospital.

    My prayer is for the last words that are preached at DR will still be pointing to Christ.


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