The World Our Parish

“Wherever there is found a man, there is the minister free to preach. The whole world is our parish, we know of no fetter upon our feet, and no gag upon our lips. Though kings should pass laws, the servants of Christ can bear the penalty, but they cannot disobey their Master, though the Emperor should say the gospel should not be preached by any unauthorized denomination in France, as I have heard he has said of late, we care not for him. What cares the Church for a thousand Emperors? Their resolutions are mockery, their laws waste-paper, the Church never was yet vassal to the state, or servile slave to municipalities and powers, and she neither can nor will be. At all the laws of states, she laughs, and utterly defies them, if they come in the way of the law of Christ which says, ‘Teach the gospel to every creature.’ Brethren, I say, the Church has a right anywhere and everywhere – a right, not because she is tolerated; the word is insult; not because the law permits; the law permitting or not permitting, tolerated or untolerated, everywhere beneath the arch of God’s heaven, God’s servants have a right to preach. Oh that they would claim the right, and in every place teach and preach Jesus Christ continually!”

Charles Spurgeon
The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, Vol.7, p.285-28