Book Review: “Commentary on Matthew” By C. H. Spurgeon

Book Review: “Commentary on Matthew” By C. H. Spurgeon

Commentary on Matthew: The Gospel of the Kingdom
(Banner of Truth).

The name Charles Haddon Spurgeon is familiar to many. Whether one has benefited from his Morning and Evening readings, his written sermons, his Treasury of David or perhaps simply heard some memorable quote, most would agree that he certainly has and continues to be positively influential. Spurgeon was born in 1834, converted at the age of 16 and commenced his pastoral ministry in 1851. Nicknamed the prince of preachers, Spurgeon was a faithful herald of the gospel of Jesus Christ. A warrior for the truth and a fisherman for souls, he was a man who was used for the glory of God. After many struggles against those who propagated error and with personal issues of health, Spurgeon died and went to be with the Lord on 31 January 1892.

This is a newly typeset edition of Spurgeon’s commentary on the Gospel according to Matthew. This volume is a precious jewel among the treasures of C. H. Spurgeon’s writings. Spurgeon’s preaching was of a textual expository style, but there are two works where Spurgeon provides the reader with a systematic verse-by-verse exposition of an entire biblical book.[i] The first was his Treasury of David (an exposition of every Psalm) and the second his commentary on Matthew. This volume was the last book Spurgeon worked on before his death. Sadly, Spurgeon didn’t see this commentary in its final form as he died before he could offer a final proofreading. However, the final touches of this volume were completed by his personal secretary[ii] based upon Spurgeon’s spoken and written words. In his later years, Spurgeon spent his winters in Mentone, France. The warmer weather provided him comfort against his struggle with poor health. On these occasions Spurgeon worked earnestly on this particular volume, to the point where his wife feared for his health due to his devotion to this task. There in the south of France, on 31 January 1892, Spurgeon died leaving us with this final work – a work “written on the border-land of heaven” (p. x) in the words of Susannah Spurgeon.

This is not a technical commentary dealing with deep exegetical issues; instead it is an expositional commentary containing Spurgeonic flavour and wit. It is practical and relevant, and contains great summaries on many events in the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus as found in Matthew. This commentary is helpfully divided into 105 brief sections based on the gospels natural chapter and verse divisions revolving around the theme of Christ’s kingship. This commentary is a wonderful contribution to the studies of the gospel according to Matthew. For the preacher it contains helpful summaries and classic Spurgeonic insights. This volume would be of great value for every believer and would make a great daily devotional. The best summary of this commentary is found in the words of his dear wife Susannah:

“It is the tired worker’s final labour of love for his Lord. It is the last sweet song from lips that were ever sounding forth the praises of his King. It is the dying shout of victory from the standard-bearer, who bore his Captain’s colours unflinchingly through the thickest of the fight” (p. ix).

[i] In addition to these expositions of entire biblical books (Psalms and Matthew), Spurgeon did write many verse-by-verse expositions of selected passages of Scripture. This can be found at the end of many of his published sermons.

[ii] Rev. Joseph William Harrald (Spurgeon’s personal secretary) did the final revisions and compilation of this volume. No other man was more closely associated with Charles Haddon Spurgeon.


  1. Martin Pakula

    Good to know Andrew. His commentary on Psalms is fantastic – very helpful for preaching. I also like J C Ryle’s commentaries on the gospels – probably similar in style.

  2. Don

    Thanks, Andrew. I look forward to obtaining a copy of this commentary.

    My friend, Damien Farnsworth over at Fallen & Flawed wrote this charming post on C.H.Spurgeon’s unique writing style.

    But, as often as I quote Spurgeon in HBC Tweets, I still have a real fondness for Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the New Testament. It was the first theology book my Dad gave me when I was in my teens.

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