October - 2018
Who Was That Man
“I was years and years upon the brink of hell—I mean in my own feeling. I was unhappy, I was desponding, I was despairing. I dreamed of hell. My life was full of sorrow and wretchedness, believing that I was lost.”
Charles Spurgeon used these strong words to describe his adolescent years. Despite his Christian upbringing (he was christened as an infant, and raised in the Congregational church), and his own efforts (he read the Bible and prayed daily), Spurgeon woke one January Sunday in 1850 with a deep sense of his need for deliverance.
Because of a snowstorm, the 15-year-old’s path to church was diverted down a side street. For shelter, he ducked into the Primitive Methodist Chapel on Artillery Street. An unknown substitute lay preacher stepped into the pulpit and read his text—Isaiah 45:22—“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is none else.”
Spurgeon’s Autobiographyrecords his reaction:
“He had not much to say, thank God, for that compelled him to keep on repeating his text,“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is none else.”, and there was nothing needed—by me, at any rate except his text. Then, stopping, he pointed to where I was sitting under the gallery, and he said, ‘That young man there looks very miserable’ … and he shouted, as I think only a Primitive Methodist can, ‘Look! Look, young man! Look now!’ … Then I had this vision—not a vision to my eyes, but to my heart. I saw what a Savior Christ was.… Now I can never tell you how it was, but I no sooner saw whom I was to believe than I also understood what it was to believe, and I did believe in one moment.“And as the snow fell on my road home from the little house of prayer I thought every snowflake talked with me and told of the pardon I had found. (Christianity Today Magazine)
Quite a testimony don’t you think? God provided a snowstorm and His word to save Charles Spurgeon, one of the great Christians of his time.
Oh, wait, there was one more thing God provided. An unknown substitute layman Preacher. To this day no-one knows who he was.
Let us read our Bibles this month and pick out one verse to memorize (maybe Isaiah 45:22). Then as we walk among a lost and dying world let us be the unknown layman God uses.