God's Care Sermon Illustrations

God's Care Sermon Illustrations

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When the "Storm Cloud" Came

In February, 1931, our district was reduced to a state of famine, and there was yet another month to wheat harvest. We had helped many, but one day when the Christians came for help we had to tell them we had nothing left. I told them that God was a prayer-hearing and prayer-answering God. They proposed to come and join in my prayer each afternoon. On the fourth day of the intercession I was called out of the meeting to see what was happening. In the north was a dark cloud approaching, and as we watched, it crossed our district and rained heavily. It was not an ordinary rain, but a deluge of little black seeds in such abundance they could be shoveled up. They asked, "What is it?" The seeds proved edible and the supply so great it sustained the people until harvest. We learned later that the storm had risen in Mongolia and wrecked the places where this grain (called Kao­Liang) was stored. The seed was carried fifteen hundred miles to drop on the district where prayer was being answered.—The Sunday School Times.

He careth for the sparrows!
Winter's long night is o'er,
And on the budded branches
They greet the Spring once more.

He careth for the sparrows!
Through days of darkest dread,
His Love has kept them sheltered;
His servants kept them fed.

He careth for the sparrows!
How simple, then, to see,
That if His Hand keeps them from harm
He'll do the same for me! Selected.

The Missionary's Defense

The following occurrence was related by Missionary Von Asselt, Rhenish missionary in Sumatra from 1856 to 1876, on a visit to Lubeck:

When I first went to Sumatra, in the year 1856, I was the first European missionary to go among the wild Battas, although, twenty years prior, two American missionaries had come to them with the Gospel; but they had been killed and eaten. Since then no effort had been made to bring the Gospel to these people, and, naturally, they had remained the same cruel savages.

"What it means for one to stand alone among a savage people, unable to make himself understood, not understanding a single sound of their language, but whose suspicious, hostile looks and gestures speak only a too-well-understood language — yes, it is hard for me to realize that. The first two years which I spent among the Battas, at first all alone and afterward with my wife, were so hard that it makes me shudder even now when I think of them. Often it seemed as if we were not only encompassed by hostile men, but also by hostile powers of darkness; for often an inexplicable fear would come over us, so that we had to get up at night and go on our knees to pray or read the Word of God, in order to find relief.

"After we had lived in this place for two years we moved several hours' journey inland, among a tribe somewhat civilized, who received us more kindly. There we built a small house with three rooms — a living room, a bedroom and a small reception room — and life for us became a little more easy and cheerful.

"When I had been in this new place for some months, a man came to me from the district where we had been, and whom I had known there. I was sitting on the bench in front of our house, and he sat down beside me, and for a while talked of this, that, and the other. Finally he began:

"'Now, teacher, I have yet one request.'

"'And what is that?'

"'I would like to have a look at your watchmen close at hand.'

"'What watchmen do you mean? I do not have any.'

"'I mean the watchmen whom you station around your house at night, to protect you.'

"'But I have no watchmen,' I said again; `I have only a little herdboy and a little cook, and they would make poor watchmen.'

"Then the man looked at me incredulously, as if he wished to say: `Oh, do not try to make me believe otherwise, for I know better.'

"Then he asked: `May I look through your house, to see if they are hid there?'

"'Yes, certainly,' I said, laughingly; `look through it; you will not find anybody.' So he went in and searched in every corner, even through the beds, but came to me very much disappointed.

"Then I myself began a little probing and requested him to tell me the circumstances about those watchmen of whom he spoke, and this is what he related to me:

"'When you first came to us, we were very angry with you. We did not want you to live among us; we did not trust you, and believed you had some design against us. Therefore we came together and resolved to kill you and your wife. Accordingly, we went to your house night after night; but when we came near, there stood always, close around the house, a double row of watchmen with glittering weapons, and we did not venture to attack them to get into your house. But we were not willing to abandon our plan, so we went to a professional assassin (there still was among the savage Battas at that time a special guild of assassins, who killed for hire anyone whom it was desired to get out of the way), and asked him if he would undertake to kill you and your wife. He laughed at us because of our cowardice, and said, "I fear no God, and no devil. I will get through those watchmen easily." So we came all together in the evening, and the assassin, swinging his weapon about his head, went courageously on before us. As we neared your house, we remained behind, and let him go on alone. But in a short time he came running back hastily, and said, "No, I dare not risk to go through alone; two rows of big strong men are there, very close together, shoulder to shoulder, and their weapons shine like fire." Then we gave up killing you. But now, tell me, teacher, who are these watchmen? Have you never seen them?'

"'No, I have never seen them.'

"'And your wife did not see them either?'

"'No, my wife did not see them.'

"'But yet we all have seen them; how is that?'

"Then I went in, and brought a Bible from our house, and holding it open before him, said: `See here; this Book is the Word of our great God, in which He promises to guard and defend us, and we firmly believe that Word; therefore we need not see the watchmen; but you do not believe, therefore the great God has to show you the watchmen, in order that you may learn to believe.'" Gospel Herald.

Returning to the Moody Bible Institute late one evening, Joseph H—, one of our pastor's course students stopped his car for a traffic light. A man climbed into the seat beside the student and thrust a gun against his side, then curtly ordered, "Drive on, and don't do anything to attract attention." Joe obeyed the gunman's order. His mind turned to the Lord, and almost unconsciously the words came from his lips, "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." New it was the bandit's turn to be startled. "What are you talking about? Are you crazy?" he asked. This gave Joe an opportunity to explain that because he was born again and Christ lived in him, he had eternal life, and that physical death would only mean continued life in glory. The stranger snorted, "Now I know you're crazy." But his interest was kindled and the student continued to tell the gunman about the Saviour. Suddenly the hold­up man asked his driver to "pull over to the curb," then withdrew his gun, explaining that he wanted to hear more about how to gain victory over fear and death. Opening his Gospel of John, the student asked the man to read from the third chapter. As Joe explained John 3:16, the gunman suddenly stopped him and shouted joyfully, "I see it." He then confessed faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and the two bowed their heads and prayed. From a leaflet published by Moody Bible Institute.

His King's Nearness

The late Mrs. Ralph C. Norton asked the Belgian Queen's permission to tell how one soldier, who later fell in battle, found faith in God. This true story came from the chaplain, known to Mrs. Norton. The soldier had received a Gospel at the front. He read of God, but because he could not see Him, he could not believe in His reality and His omnipresence. He longed to believe. One night at the Yser, while on sentry duty, alone in the presence of danger he thought of God. If only he could believe! Soon he was aware of someone behind him. He knew he was standing there, yet he did not dare to turn his head to see. At last ever so little, he turned his head, and saw King Albert! Yes, his king was standing sentry duty with him —sharing in the very experience of his soldier. His monarch stood motionless for a long time, while the soldier prayed. Faith in God through Christ came. The presence of the king, silent yet so near, had brought him faith in the presence and personality of God.—The Expositor.

"They've Got God"

The Watchman-Examiner publishes an interview of the editor with Miss Homer who recently spent fifteen months in China and Japan, representing the Church Committee for China Relief. in that interview Miss Homer told of a curious incident which happened in Chungking in May, 1939, setting forth the influence on the Chinese of Christian Generalissimo and Madame Chiang Kai-shek. In an air raid on Chungking, the cliffs, going down into the rivers on three sides of the city, became a veritable death trap to thousands. Five thousand were wounded. "Finally, toward dawn, when the fires had burned down a bit, what used to be streets were Jammed with screaming, hysterical people. Suddenly there came a yell from the crowd, `Look! Look over there! There's the Generalissimo and Madame Chiang!' Everybody looked, and sure enough, there they were, those two, just wandering down the street hand in hand clothes torn, faces dirty, stopping now and then to adjust a bandage or comfort someone, so stricken and near to tears they could hardly speak. Then the crowd began to mutter and then to roar. `They haven't a bodyguard' Where are their soldiers?' For just a moment there was a panic, and then suddenly a little coolie on the edge of the crowd yelled out, `Oh, that's all right; they've got God!' They say that a curious quiet settled down over that crowd. They stood there — screaming stopped—perfectly silent, just watching while those two wandered off into the snow and disappeared."—Selected.

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