Giving Sermon Illustrations

Giving Sermon Illustrations

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Not a Sacrifice But a Joy

A rich business man and a prominent attorney were traveling around the world. They saw many impressive sights, but agreed that something they saw in Korea was most impressive of all.

One morning as they walked along a country road in Korea, they saw a boy pulling a plow which was steered by an old man. It amused the attorney so much that he insisted on taking a picture of the scene with his little pocket camera. Later he showed the picture to a missionary in the next village, remarking about the peculiar spectacle.

"Yes," said the missionary, "it seems a very strange way to plow a field, but I happen to know the boy and old man well. They are very poor. However, when the little church was built here in the village, they wanted to contribute something. They had no money. They had not grain to spare and winter was coming on, so they sold their ox and gave the money to the church building fund, and now, minus the valuable animal, they have to pull the plow themselves."

The men looked at each other for a moment, then the attorney said, "But what a stupendous sacrifice! Why did you allow it?"

"They did not feel that way about it. They regarded it as a great joy that they had an ox to give to the Lord's work."—The Sunday School Friend.

Credit Only for Intention

An old farmer had dropped a shilling in the kirk plate instead of a penny. Noticing his mistake he tackled the elder at the end of the service. "It wud be sacreeledge, Sandy, tae Tuft it oot noo." the elder said, "Weel, I'll git credit for it in Heaven," replied the farmer. "Na, na; ye'll only git credit for a penny, for that was a' ye intendit tae pit in."—Church Business.

Bearing the Loss A benevolent man was planning $100 to the Lord's work, but before it was paid he suffered a disaster by a destructive hailstorm. "I met him," says the narrator, "and was again invited to call and receive his donation. While walking toward the house he said: `I had intended to give this time $100, but in view of this calamity I shall be obliged to reduce it to $60.' I said nothing, but followed him into his dwelling. He gave me a seat and then called his wife out; and after an absence so long as to excite my wonder he returned and handed me his check for $100. Thinking it possible that it was so written by a slip of the thought, I said: "So you meant this for $100?' `Yes,' he replied, `my wife and I have talked it over a little and we have concluded it best to bear the loss ourselves, and not charge it to the Lord.' "—The Illustrator.

Better Than Bazaars!

On the day of dedication of our church, Dr. Louis S. Bauman made this statement: "If this church attempts to raise money by chicken suppers or bazaars, it can never be while I remain its pastor. Nor do we propose to worry the businessmen of the town for contributions, implying that they must give because we patronize them." A Christian lady in the audience had casually dropped in for the dedicatory services, and had intended to give a few dollars. When the offering was taken, in it were two checks from her, one in her own name for $2,500, and the other for $500 in the name of her parents. The pastor's method of raising money caused her change of mind. She also became a member of the congregation, and there have been many other contributions from her. The pastor is still wondering just how long it would have taken the women of the church to "clear" that amount working at chicken suppers and bazaars. —Sunday School Times.

There's No Pocket in a Shroud

Use your money while you're living,
Do not hoard it to be proud;
You can never take it with you
There's no pocket in a shroud.

Gold can help you on no farther
Than the graveyard where you lie,
And though you are rich while living
You're a pauper when you die.

Use it then some lives to brighten,
As through life they weary plod;
Place your bank account in heaven
And grow richer toward your God.

Use it wisely, use it freely,
Do not hoard it to be proud;
You can never take it with you—
There's no pocket in a shroud.—Selected.

All That He Had

At a meeting held near Oxford in connection with the building of a new church, a speaker made an eloquent appeal for funds, urging the audience to give all they had upon them. All were impressed, and among them was a small boy, who, when the offering was taken placed a top and five marbles in the plate. In the vestry afterward one of the stewards was inclined to ridicule the boy's offering; but the chairman said: "I will give you twenty pounds for the top, and will take the marbles to Oxford, and will get five of my friends to give five pounds each for them." He wrote out his check for twenty pounds, and in due course forwarded the other twenty-five pounds. At the stone-laying, there was placed under the principal stone the top and five marbles from the little boy who gave all he had. So a little given for Jesus' sake will be made much by Him.—The Family Herald and Weekly Star.

Possibilities in a Gift

When Livingstone went to Africa, a Scotch woman who had saved up thirty pounds, gave it to him with the words: "I want you to save yourself needless toil and exposure by hiring some competent body servant, who will go with you wherever you go, and share your sacrifices and dangers." With that money, Livingstone hired his faithful servant, Sebantino. In the heart of Africa, a lion threw the missionary down and crushed the bones of his left arm.' But Sebantino saved Livingstone at the risk of his own life. What if the gift had not been made?—Selected.


Believers in a momentarily returning Lord who amass treasure stultify their testimony before both God and man. George Muller, after a million and a half sterling had passed through his hands for his orphans, died with 118 pounds in the bank —his entire personal fortune. One secret of Wesley's power was his superb divorce from money. "I fling money out of my hands," he said, "as quickly as possible, lest it find a way into my heart." It is estimated that he gave away during his lifetime 30,000 pounds (an equivalent of 100,000 pounds today) derived principally from gifts, and the proceeds from the sales of his books and pamphlets; and dying, he left behind him as someone has put it, `a library, a well-known clergyman's gown, a much abused reputation, and—the Methodist Church."—The Dawn.

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