|« Prev||Believe.||Next »|
Moody and the Dying Soldier.
After the battle of Pittsburgh Landing and Murfreesboro, I was in a hospital at Murfreesboro. And one night after midnight, I was woke up and told that there was a man in one of the wards who wanted to see me. I went to him and he called me "chaplain!"--I wasn't a chaplain--and he said he wanted me to help him die. And I said, "I'd take you right up in my arms and carry you into the kingdom of God if I could; but, I can't do it; I can't help you to die." And he said, "Who can?" I said: "The Lord Jesus Christ can--He came for that purpose." He shook his head and said, "He can't save me; I have sinned all my life." And I said, "But He came to save sinners." I thought of his mother in the North, and I knew that she was anxious that he should die right, and I thought I'd stay with him. I prayed two or three times, and repeated all the promises I could, and I knew that in a few hours he would be gone. I said I wanted to read him a conversation that Christ had with a man who was anxious about his soul. I turned to the third chapter of John. His eyes were riveted on me, and when I came to the 14th and 15th verses, he caught up the words, "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have eternal life." He stopped me and said, "Is that there?" I said "Yes," and he asked me to read it again, and I did so. He leaned his elbows on the cot and clasped his hands together and said, "That's good; won't you read it again."
I read it the third time, and then went on with the rest of the chapter. When I finished, his eyes were closed, his hands were folded, and there was a smile on his face. Oh! how it was lit up! What a change had come over it! I saw hits lips quivering, and I leaned over him and heard, in a faint whisper; "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have eternal life." He opened his eyes and said, "That's enough; don't read any more." He lingered a few hours and then pillowed his head on those two verses, and then went up in one of Christ's chariots and took his seat in the Kingdom of God.
You may spurn God's remedy and perish; but I tell you God don't want you to perish. He says, "As I live I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked." "Turn ye, turn ye, for why will ye die?"
A Child at its Mother's Grave.
I remember seeing a story some time ago in print. It has been in the papers, but it will not hurt us to hear it again. A family in a Southern city were stricken down with yellow fever. It was raging there, and there were very stringent sanitary rules. The moment anybody died, a cart went around and took the coffin away. The father was taken sick and died and was buried, and the mother was at last stricken down. The neighbors were afraid of the plague, and none dared go into the house. The mother had a little son and was anxious about her boy, and afraid he would be neglected when she was called away, so she called the little fellow to her bedside, and said, "My boy, I am going to leave you, but Jesus will come to you when I am gone." The mother died, the cart came along and she was laid in the grave. The neighbors would have liked to take the boy, but were afraid of the pestilence. He wandered about and finally started up to the place where they had laid his mother and sat down on the grave, and wept himself to sleep. Next morning he awoke and realized his position--alone and hungry. A stranger came along and seeing the little fellow sitting on the ground, asked him what he was waiting for. The boy remembered what his mother had told him, and answered, "I am waiting for Jesus," and told him the whole story. The man's heart was touched, tears trickled down his cheeks and he said, "Jesus has sent me," to which the boy replied, "You have been a good while coming, sir." He was provided for. So it is with us. To wait for results, we must have courage and patience and God will help us.
"You Know Me, Moody."
Well, let me illustrate it then, and perhaps you will be able to understand it. Suppose I am dying with consumption; which I inherited from my father or mother. I did not get it by any fault of my own, by any neglect of my health; I inherited it, let us suppose. Well, I go to my physician, and to the best physicians, and they all give me up. They say I am incurable; I must die; I have not thirty days to live. Well, a friend happens to come along and looks at me and says: "Moody, you have got the consumption." "I know it very well; I don't want any one to tell me that." "But," he says, "There is a remedy--a remedy, I tell you. Let me have your attention. I want to call your attention to it. I tell you there is a remedy." "But sir, I don't believe it. I have tried the leading physicians in this country and in Europe, and they tell me there is no hope." "But you know me, Moody; you have known me for years." "Yes, sir." "Do you think, then, I would tell you a falsehood?" "No." "Well, ten years ago I was far gone. I was given up by the physicians to die, but I took this medicine and it cured me, I am perfectly well--look at me;" I say that it is a very strange case. "Yes, it may be strange, but it is a fact. That medicine cured me; take this medicine and it will cure you. Although it has cost me a great deal, it shall not cost you anything. Although the salvation of Jesus Christ is as free as the air, it cost God the richest jewel of heaven. He had to give his only Son; give all He had; He had only one Son, and He gave Him. Do not make light of it, then, I beg of you." "Well" I say, "I would like to believe you, but this is contrary to my reason." Hearing this, my friend goes away and brings another friend to me and he testifies to the same thing. He again goes away when I do not yet believe, and brings in another, and another; and another, and they all testify to the same thing. They say they were as bad as myself; and they took the same medicine that has been offered to me, and it cured them. He then hands me the medicine. I dash it to the ground; I do not believe in its saving power: I die. The reason is, then, that I spurned the remedy.
So it will not be because Adam fell, but that you spurn the remedy offered to you to save you. You will have darkness rather than light. How, then, shall ye escape if ye neglect so great salvation? There is no hope for you if you neglect the remedy.
Once there were a couple of men arranging a balloon ascension. They thought they had two ropes fastened to the car, but one of them only was fastened, and they unfastened that one rope, and the balloon started to go up. One of the men seized hold of the car, and the other seized hold of the rope. Up went the balloon, and the man who seized hold of the car went up with it, and was lost. The man who laid hold of the rope was just as sincere as the man who laid hold of the car. There was just as much reason to say that the man who laid hold of that would be saved because he was sincere as the man who believed in a lie because he is sincere in his belief. I like a man to be able to give a reason for the faith that is in him. Once I asked a man what he believed, and he said he believed what his church believed. I asked him what his church believed, and he said he supposed his church believed what he did; and that was all I could get out of him. And so men believe what other people believe and what their church believes, without really knowing what their church and other people do believe.
|« Prev||Believe.||Next »|