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"How Funny You Talk."
No book in the world has been so misjudged as the Bible. Men judge it without reading it. Or perhaps they read a bit here and a bit there, and then close it saying, "It is so dark and mysterious!" You take a book, now-a-days, and read it. Some one asks you what you think about it. "Well," you say, "I have only read it through once, not very carefully, and I should not like to give an opinion." Yet people take up God's book, read a few pages, and condemn the whole of it. Of all the skeptics and infidels I have ever met speaking against the Bible, I have never met one who read it through. There may be such men, but I have never met them. It is simply an excuse. There is no man living who will stand up before God and say that kept him out of the kingdom. It is the devil's work trying to make us believe it is not true, and that it is dark and mysterious. The only way to overcome the great enemy of souls is by the written Word of God. He knows that, and so tries to make men disbelieve it. As soon as a man is a true believer in the Word of God, he is a conqueror over Satan. Young man! the Bible is true. What have these infidels to give you in its place? What has made England but the open Bible? Every nation that exalteth the Word of God is exalted, and every nation that casteth it down is cast down. Oh, let us cling close to the Bible. Of course, we shall not understand it all at once. But men are not to condemn it on that account. Suppose I should send my little boy, five years old, to school tomorrow morning, and when he came home in the afternoon, say to him, "Willie, can you read? can you write? can you spell? Do you understand all about Algebra, Geometry; Hebrew, Latin, and Greek?" "Why, papa," the little fellow would say, "how funny you talk. I have been all day trying to learn the A B C!" Well; suppose I should reply, "If you have not finished your education, you need not go any more." What would you say? Why, you would say, I had gone mad. There would he just as much reason in that, as in the way that people talk about the Bible. My friends, the men who have studied the Bible for fifty years--the wise men and the scholars, the great theologians--have never got down to the depths of it yet. There are truths there that the Church of God has been searching out for the last eighteen hundred years, but no man has fathomed the depths of that ever-living stream.
"How Christ Expounded It."
You will find Christ, after He had risen, again speaking about the Old Testament prophets: "And beginning at Moses, and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the Scripture the things concerning Himself." Concerning Himself. Don't that settle the question? I tell you I am convinced in my mind that the Old Testament is as true as the New. "And He began at Moses and all the prophets." Mark that, "all the prophets." Then in the forty-fourth verse: "And He said unto them, these are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the law of Moses and in the prophets and in the psalms concerning Me. Then opened He their understanding that they might understand the Scripture."
The Scotch "Draw the Bible" on False Doctrine.
There is no place I have ever been in where people so thoroughly understand their Bibles as in Scotland. Why, little boys could quote Scripture and take me up on a text. They have the whole nation just educated, as it were, with the Word of God. Infidelity cannot come there. A man got up in Glasgow, at a corner, and began to preach universal salvation. "Oh, sir," said an old woman, "that will never save the like of me." She had heard enough preaching to know that it would never save her. If a man comes among them with any false doctrine, these Scotchmen instantly draw their Bibles on him. I had to keep my eyes open and be careful what I said there. They knew their Bibles a good deal better than I did. And so if the preachers could get the people to read the Word of God more carefully, and note what they heard, there would not be so much infidelity among us.
Moody and the Infidel.
An infidel had come the other day, to one of our meetings, and when I talked with him, he replied that he didn't believe one-twelfth part of the Bible, but I kept on quoting Scripture, feeling that if the man didn't believe, God could do what He chose with His word, and make it quick and powerful, and sharper than a two-edged sword. The man kept saying that he did not believe what the Bible said, and I kept on quoting passage after passage of Scripture, and the man, who, two hours before, had entered the hall an infidel, went out of it a converted man, and a short time after his conversion he left the City for Boston, a Christian, to join his family in Europe. Before this gentleman went away, I asked him if he believed the Bible, and his reply was: "From back to back, every word of it."
"Deluged with Blood."
A good many years ago there was a convention held in France, and those who held it wanted to get the country to deny a God, to burn the Bible, wanted to say that men passed away like a dog and a dumb animal. What was the result! Not long since, that country was filled with blood. Did you ever think what would take place if we could vote the Bible and the ministers of the gospel and God out from among the people? My friends, the country would be deluged with blood. Your life and mine would not be safe in this City to-night. We could not walk through these streets with safety. We don't know how much we owe God and the influence of His gospel among even ungodly men.
The Dumb Man Possessed; Gustave Dore. Matthew, ix, 32.
The Burial Of Jesus; Gustave Dore. John, xix, 38-42.
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