Madman for Christ

Union Conference Record, Australasian, November 2, 1908

NEVER had any people such reason to be filled with a burning zeal for the salvation of sinners as we have who live to-day. It is said of Rowland Hill, that the people of his native village called him a madman. This was his defence : ” While I passed along yonder road, I saw a gravel-pit cave in, and bury three men alive. I hastened to the rescue, and shouted for help until they heard me in the town almost a mile away. Nobody called me a madman then. But when I see destruction about to fall on sinners and entomb them in an eternal mass of woe, and cry aloud if perchance they may behold their danger and escape, they say I am beside myself; perhaps I am, but O that all God’s children might thus be fired with desire to save their fellows!”

The position we occupy in the world demands of us a far different spirit from that which we manifest toward the perishing. We may well take to heart the rebuke of an infidel lawyer to a professed
Christian : ” Did I believe as you do, that the masses of our race are perishing in sin, I would have no rest. I would fly to tell them of salvation. I would labour day and night. I would speak with all the pathos I could summon. I would warn, expostulate, and entreat my fellow-men to turn to Christ and receive salvation at His hands. I am astonished at the manner in which the majority of you Christians tell your message. You do not act as if you believe your own words. You have not the earnestness in preaching that we lawyers have in pleading. If we were as tame as you are, we would never carry a single suit.”

Other References to this Illustration:

The Consignment of the Lost
Evangelical Christianity by Edward Heppenstall

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