Gospel Sermon Illustrations

Gospel Sermon Illustrations

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Any Competition for the Gospel?

The American agent for General Mo­tors in Shanghai asked a Christian lead­er in China if he had much competition, in his missionary work, from the sages and philosophers of Confucianism. The Christian answered by asking the motor dealer a question, "Do you, when you try to sell a Cadillac or a LaSalle, have much competition with the Chinese mer­chant who sells wheelbarrows?"—Good News.

After Fifty Years the Gospel

A blessed work of grace has been going on in various parts of Scotland. Many have accepted God's great salvation, and rejoiced in their newly found Saviour. Among these was a Mr. Murray, an office-bearer in one of the churches, and for fifty years a professor of religion, without, however, the "one thing needful." One day as Mr. Murray was reading a Gospel paper he came across the following statement: "The Gospel brings us, not a work to do, but a word to believe about a work done." "I see it all," said he to his wife, "I have been working at the keyhole, and the door has been open all the time. My fifty years' profession goes for nothing, and I get salvation through simply accepting Christ."Love Wins.

William Jennings Bryan on Preaching

"I desire my minister to preach every Sunday the simple gospel. 'The old, old story' never wearies the average congregation if it comes from a devout mind with preparation in the message. My ideal sermon is one that has an appeal to the unconverted and a spiritual uplift for the Christian. I want my minister to be abreast of the times on all new theological questions and research, but I do not want him to bring them into the pulpit. I have formed certain views of Christ, His gospel, and the inspiration of the Scriptures from a careful reading of the Book of books and of the Shorter Catechism, and it will not make me a better Christian or profit my spiritual life to unsettle these views by a discussion in the pulpit of new theories of Christ and the Holy Scriptures. Finally, I want my minister to act upon the belief that Christ's gospel is the sure cure for all social and political evils, and that his best method of promoting temperance, social morality, and good citizenship is to bring men into the Church. In a word, I want my minister to emphasize in his lifework the declaration of the most successful preacher, Paul: `It pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe."'—Courtesy Moody Monthly.

Christ Not the Gospel

Many mistakenly think it is Christ Himself that is the Gospel. But this is not so. Christ, we may say reverently, has always been "Himself"; He is "the same yesterday, and today, and forever" (Heb. 13:8). But there has not always been a Gospel of salvation for lost sinners. Not what Christ is, but what He did,—that is the Gospel. As W. W. Martin has said: "Our justification is connected with the shedding of Christ's blood. We are not justified by His incarnation, wonderful though it is. We are not justified by His life and example, spotless and perfect though it is,—nay, we are rather condemned by it. We are justified solely and only by His death." So Paul tells us by inspiration: "But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8). What Christ did for us, when He died in our stead for our sins and was raised again for our justification,—that is the Gospel.—Sunday School Times.

A Prime Minister of England Once Said:

"If I am asked what is the remedy for the deeper sorrows of the human heart, what a man should chiefly look to in progress through life as the power that is to sustain him under trials and enable him manfully to confront his afflictions, I must point to something which in a well-known hymn is called 'The old, old story,' told in an old, old Book, and taught with an old, old teaching, which is the greatest and best gift ever given to mankind."—Selected.

The Lighthouse in the Desert

Most lighthouses are on rocks and dangerous places in the water. Practically all lighthouses seem to say, Stay away from here. Danger! I know of a lighthouse that says just the opposite, for it says, Come. This lighthouse is in the middle of the Arizona Desert. There is no water to be had for over thirty miles in every direction, but just where that lighthouse stands there is a well. So there is light there at night to let thirsty people know where the well of water is. The tower in the daytime and the light at night say, Here is water. Isn't that like the Lord Jesus who in the midst of a desert would stand and cry, "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink"? Where else could you go for living water but to the Lord Jesus? The Gospel is still calling to all, "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely."—Good News.

Mistaken Kindness

Many kindhearted people, with a pitying concern for the underprivileged, have been misled by movements that undertake to save people with soap, soup, salve, social security, and scholarship. No Christian can be indifferent to the poverty, hardship, or sickness of anyone, but God's plan is that the ministering to the physical needs of the unsaved shall be an incentive to repentance. "The goodness of God leadeth . . . to repentance." Any ministration that convinces the sinner that sin is not so bad after all, any preaching that urges sin­ners to "cheer up" rather than repent is not God's Gospel.—B. H. Shadduck, in Sunday School Times.

Open Up the Old Wells

It is not a change of religion one needs, but a change of life. Down on Cape Cod, in a little provincial town, there was an old place which had well-nigh gone to decay; a man bought it, and was about to employ men to dig a new well, when an old farmer who had known the place in its glory said: "Why don't you clean out the old well? There used to be plenty of good, sweet water in it." The suggestion was a revelation. They began to work at it—dirt, stones and rubbish, clay and sand were brought out, and in a few days after the cleansing process the old well filled up again with fresh and living water. There is nothing the matter with the old truths, the precious religion of Jesus Christ which was once in the heart. The world can never outgrow the eternal truth of the eternal God. There can be no substitute for the pure water of life. Clean out the old wells and let the water flow. The wells of salvation from which our fathers drank are the wells that will satisfy us.—Sunday School Times.

Two Slums

It was once said of the ministry of F. B. Meyer, "He supported every effort to get a man out of a slum. He was more concerned, however, to get the slum out of the man." Man's first and great need is to be born again. And the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only power that can give a man a new heart.Christian Victory.

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