Salvation Sermon Illustrations

Salvation Sermon Illustrations

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The Cultured Pig

When Henry Moorhouse was a boy, on a certain occasion he was walking with his father through the streets of Manchester, England. His attention was suddenly called to a man standing before the door of a building, and crying aloud, "Walk in, ladies and gentlemen, and see the great American pig." Having his curiosity aroused, he paid his penny, and entered the building. There sure enough was a wonderful pig, performing feats and giving evidence of an intelligence probably never a pig exhibited before.

At the command of his master he would pick out from the alphabet lying upon the floor, the letters, "G-o-o-d P-i-g." He would also walk about upon his hind legs and shake hands with those who paid him a visit. Moreover he had been washed and scrubbed until he was perfectly clean, and he was dressed in a beautiful garment. Of course he excited the highest admiration, and no one could deny that he was well educated, and well behaved in every respect. But notwithstanding his remarkable culture, and his attractive appearance, he was still a pig; better off perhaps than most other pigs, and yet after all, only a pig, and a pig he would remain however advanced his learning.

There is no error, amid the perils of these last days, more dangerous, as there is none more shallow and silly, than the notion taught by many, that culture is the way of salvation.—Gospel Herald.

Scenery Doesn't Cure

You might as well try to cure smallpox by scenery as to save the world by improvement of environment.—Christian Observer.

At Tunbridge, England, there is a monument erected to the memory of a group of gypsies. Gipsy Smith, the noted evangelist, tells us the meaning of that monument: thirty gypsies, workers in the fields of hops, were driving rapidly and carelessly, singing and laughing, across a bridge over the Medway, when the wagon crashed into the railing and wagon, horses, and gypsies were thrown into the river.

One young gypsy seized a horse drifting downstream and, mounting him, watched earnestly and anxiously for his mother. At length he saw her and laid hold upon her; but she struggled in such a way that he was not able to save her. When the gypsies were being buried in the churchyard, the boy who had tried in vain to save his mother knelt down in the trench containing the coffins of those who had perished, and cried out, "Mother! Mother! I tried to save you; I did all a man could do, but you would not let me!"

So Jesus said on one occasion, "Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life" (John 5:40). Christ himself cannot save us unless we are willing to be saved.

When Julius Caesar, after the Battle of Pharsalus, landed in Africa, whither the defeated Pompey had fled before him, the head of Pompey was flung at his feet. Looking at that gruesome trophy, Caesar exclaimed, "Alas, he would have it so!"

That, in effect, is what Jesus said when, at the end of his great lament over Jerusalem, he cried out, "And ye would not!"

(Matt. 23:37).

An Allegory of Salvation

A man had fallen into a deep, dark pit and lay in its miry bottom, groaning and utterly unable to move. Someone passed by closely enough to see his plight, but walked on with stately tread, without giving any help. Another approached the edge of the pit and said, 'Poor fellow! I'm sorry for you: it's your "karma" (fate). If ever you get out, don't get in there again.' A priest next came by and said, 'Poor fellow! I am very much pained to see you in that plight. If you could but scramble up half way, I could reach you and help you up the rest of the way.' But the man was entirely helpless.

Next came one, bearing in His hands, feet and side the marks of deep wounds, and He, hearing the man's groans, had pity on him, and, reaching down to where he was, laid hold of him with His strong arm and lifted him up, saying, 'Go and sin no more.'

(Isa. 59. 16; Acts 16. 30, 31; Rom. 5. 6; Luke 10. 30-34)

In a house on the bank of the River Godavari, in S. India, lived a Christian and his wife. He had some land under cultivation on the other side of the river, and kept a small rowing boat in the water, tied to a post on the bank just outside his house, so that, when occasion required, he might cross the river and see to the crops growing on his land. One day a gust of wind snapped the rope that fastened the boat to the shore, and the little boat with the oars in it drifted out to midstream. It was a squally day, and they were rather concerned about the boat, but could see no way of getting it back.

A young man, 'Pearl of Wisdom' by name, the brother of the owner of the house, insisted on trying to recover the boat, and, heedless of the warnings of all, plunged into the river and commenced to swim toward the boat. Though a strong swimmer, he found that the wind was carrying the boat further and further away from the shore, and when he reached the middle of the river, with no hope of reaching the boat, his strength gave out. Exhausted and unable to swim further, he threw up his hands and shouted for help. His cries reached the shore, and, as no one could venture out on the river in such a storm, the distressed relatives stood weeping and wringing their hands. He was unable to save himself and there was none to save him, so they had almost abandoned all hope when round a bend in the river they saw a small fishing smack making its way toward the drowning young man. The fishermen had seen his plight and were sparing no pains to cover the distance at the utmost speed in an endeavour to save him from drowning.

Shouts of hopeful encouragement from the shore took the place of their wails of distress. The little band of relatives and friends watched intently as the fishermen drew nearer and nearer to the drowning man. At length—as the young man was going under—the smack drew alongside, and the fishermen dexterously raised the drowning man from the water and placed him safely in the boat, to the accompaniment of shouts of joy: 'He's saved! He's saved,' they cried. But there was still danger on the stormy waters, and they might well have said, as each moment he was brought nearer the shore in spite of the angry waves, 'He's being saved.' At last he reached the shore and was lifted safely on to terra firma—saved completely, with no more danger. He was home.

The believer is saved from sin's Penalty, sin's Power and will be saved from sin's Presence.

(Acts 16. 31; Rom. 5. 9, 10; 1 Pet. 1. 5, 9)

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