Edgar Johnson Goodspeed.

A full history of the wonderful career of Moody and Sankey in Great Britain ... online

. (page 37 of 64)
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will receive us. He will forgive and heal whoever brings his
soul to him. God dealeth with us as we deal with our children.
If your child does wrong, if he tells a lie, you want him to con-
fess, and begin to talk with him. He may tell you that he is the
best scholar in his class, that he is obedient, and that he loves
you. But that ain't what you want You want him to confess
that he has told a lie. So let us learn to come before the Sa-
viour and confess our sins, laying them at the feet of Jesus. But



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mayor of New York should invite all the Smiths to a banquet,
and Mr. San key should go and try to get in on the plea that he
was a singer. Or suppose a man should go whose name was
Jones and who was a good scientist. Do you suppose they
could get in when their names were not Smith ? Now, if you
can prove that you are a sinner, this invitation from Christ ap-
plies to you. Don't try to prove your worthiness but your un-
worthiness. If you want rest come to Christ It can't be
obtained in the world. You can't buy it ; your friends can't
give it to you ; God don't call you without giving you the means
of winning ; you can come if you will. O, may God give you
the power to-day.

After a prayer and the singing of a hymn, the Rev. Dr.
Tucker said " the idea of Christ has become sadly confused of
late in the world. Many think him to be far off, only to be
reached in some indistinct and unknown way. The truth is that
the idea of him should be simple, and that he is God in the
flesh, ready at any moment to save and to help men. We must
preach such a Christ and talk such a Christ. It is simply the
old story, ' God so loved the world.' "

The Rev. Dr. Seaver said there were no truer words than
those of the old hymn, " If you tarry till you are better, you'll
never come." There was no simpler definition of faith than the
one given by the late Dr. Bushnell, that "it is that act whereby
one person — a sinner — commits himself to another person — a
Saviour."

Third week of Mercy.

Still the vast multitudes throng the Hippodrome and Mr.
Moody stirs, and Sankey enthuses and soothes them. Speak-
ing, at an eight o'clock in the morning meeting, on " occupy
till I come," he said :

These words were addressed to as as well as to the Apostles,
They are for every child of God — not to the elders or the min-
isters merely, but to you and me and to every man and woman.
We may divide the church into four classes. The first are ob-



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THE WORK OF GRACE IN NEW YORK. 429

jectors ; they do nothing but object, object, object. They are
destructive. Nothing can live near them. They are always
finding fault and complaining. They want their own way, will
never be contented, should never have got into the church.
The second class are obstructive ; they remain stable, and are
a stumbling-block. Others are idlers, who take no interest in
the church. They are sound asleep, and Satan can do any-
thing with them.

To the other class I want to speak this morning. They are
the workers. I would rather have one hundred Christian
workers than one hundred converts. We must restore the
standard. It is better to get ten men to work than to do ten
men's work. I will almost say that three-fourths of the church
is asleep. O, what a power the Church of God might become
were its members ready to work for their friends' souls ! There
are one thousand persons in this hall every night who would be
glad if some one would speak with them. The trouble is we're
afraid we'll offend some one, or that we'll make a mistake, and
the result is that we do nothing. Now, there is a great diver*
sity of gifts among Christians. Every man has a circle, of
friends among whom he has more influence than any one else.
My friend here from the Philadelphia Gas Works has done
more good among his companions than the best ministers in
Philadelphia could have done. I'd rather have that man there
than Dr. Tyng. I well remember one day in London I visited
a dog market, where fights were going on. I tried in every way
to draw the attention of the crowd, but failed. Finally, one of
their own number began to speak. They stopped at once. In
fifteen minutes that man did more than all of us. I know a
Dublin man who circulates one hundred thousand dollars worth
of tracts every year, and I've heard men say, " O, how I'd like
to do that." I know another man — a reformed burglar — and I
question whether he has not done as much good as the rich
man in Dublin. Every man should use the talent God has
given him. Last Friday night these reformed men from Phila-
delphia gained the ears of men in that meeting who would not
listen to me. I heard the other day of an irreligious man who



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or tne noteis. un weanesaay morning ne sent a Doy out tor a
certain one of the city papers. The boy couldn't find it, and
brought The Tribune. The man read the report of the meet-
ings on the previous day. The story I had told of the two
brothers who became converted on the same evening at differ-
ent meetings had a power over him. He said it went to his
souL All that day and the next he remained in his room, and
at last found light, and telegraphed the news to his friends.

At this point Mr. Moody looked at his watch and said : But
my time is up ; got to close right away ; agreed to let you go
out in forty-five minutes ; let us rise and sing, " Praise God
from whom all blessings flow."

Describing a noon meeting, the reporter says :

Mr. Moody seldom preaches a sermon that fails to move a
large part of his audience to tears. In some instances the
power of his stories is very remarkable in this respect. But at
the noon meeting, when Mr. Moody did no more than preside,
the congregation was affected to a much greater degree than on
any previous occasion. The day had been set apart for prayers
and remarks on the subject of temperance, and ten men were
present who bad been converted from habits of intemperance
while the Evangelists were in Philadelphia. The hour was
given up to them, and four of the number stood in Mr. Moody's
place and told the story of their fall and subsequent conversion.
They represented different grades of society, and there was con-
siderable variety in their experiences. The effect of their sim-
ple and sometimes homely language was powerfully shown upon
all present. Tears were in the eyes of men and women every-
where. Ministers, members of the choir, policemen and re-
porters, all yielded to the influences. Mr. Moody sat at the
rear of the speakers and tears flowed down his cheeks like rain.

The first prayer was offered by the Rev. A. D. Vail, and after
a hymn had been sung Mr. Moody said: "We have with us
to-day several friends from Philadelphia who will tell what their
experience has been. They are not accustomed to speaking to
an audience like this, but I hope you will pray for them as they



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THE WORK OF GRACE IN NEW YORK. 43I

speak, and make them feel that they are among friends." He
then read from John i., n f 12 : " He came unto His own and
His own received Him not, but as many as received Him to
them gave He power/' "That," said Mr. Moody, "means
every darkened soul in New York. There is no one so vile that
He cannot save him."

Mr. Jameson, a night laborer in the gas works in Philadelphia,
was introduced. He said he was not accustomed to speaking
before such an audience, but added : When you have the religion
of Jesus Christ you are not afraid to do anything for His cause. "
He said he was formerly accustomed to make three dollars a day
and go home and tell his wife he made only ten shillings. The dif-
ference he spent for liquor. He had joined temperance societies,
but they did not help him for any length of time. One evening he
was out with his friends, and they were drinking, when one of
them suggested that they go to the revival meetings, as he had
heard that Mr. Sankey was a "red-hot singer." The sermon
came home to him (Jameson), and he prayed. " The prayer,"
he said, " was the hardest work I ever did in my life. It made
me sweat more than working around the hot fires of the gas
works. We now have prayer-meetings at the works ; there are
one hundred Christians there, and a * gin mill ' near by is for
sale."

Mr. Moody then presented Mr. Linton to the audience. He
said : I was once a very prosperous man, and had made a great
deal of money. I began to drink. I lost my money. I left
the church. I lost my little boy whom I idolized, and his death-
bed scene made me reform ; but I only gave God one-half of
my heart. I again became prosperous and took to drink, and
lost my money and my friends, and went to ruin. A dear sister
it last took me into the meetings at the Depot. I met Mr.
Moody. After that I attended the meetings alone, and finally
God blessed me with new life."

The hymn " Yield not to temptation" was sung, and Mr Hil-
ton said : " I was once a low drunkard : I was beneath the brute,
and you can't get much lower than that. My mother prayed
for me, and my friends all left me. One night some of us went



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432 MOODY AND SANKEY IN AMERICA.

in to hear Mr. Sankey sing. When we were going away I said
I thought he was a pretty good singer, but argued that 4 Billy '
Moseman could beat him. I went the next night, and Mr.
Moody preached from the text, 'Where art thou?' Those
words kept ringing in my ears. I knew my degradation; had
even called upon God to smite me dead. But those words
became my salvation, and I am a new man. I would not give
what happiness I have known for the wealth of millionaires.
My family and my niece have now all come to Christ, and we
are happy."

Mr. Anderson said he had become intemperate while in the
army, had reformed and then again had turned to drink. " I
became," he said, " a perfect slave to liquor. I have taken a
razor to my throat in moments of despair. My friends all
deserted me, and there was none who cared for me but my wife
and my aged father and mother. They all prayed for me for
years. I went to one of the meetings. I kept repeating the
words * turn ye, turn ye, why will ye die.' I had a great strug-
gle, and at last was on my knees, and a great load was lifted
from off my shoulders."

Mr. Reid, a fine-looking young man, said be was a helpless
drunkard at twenty-one years of age. He had taken pledge
after pledge, and ail to no purpose. His mother loved him ten-
derly. He read to the audience a letter he had once received
from her. One night he came home after a long debauch in a
neighboring city, and his mother met him kindly. He fell sick,
and when he had recovered he was told that his mother was at
the point of death. He then thought that he had murdered her.
He resolved again to reform, and he did reform. u God," he
said, " was so good to me as to raise that mother from her bed
of sickness."

Mr. Moody then prayed, with a voice choked by his deep
emotion, that these men might be blessed, and might have
strength to always keep near Christ. The meeting was then
dismissed with the benediction.

At another meeting the subject of Mr. Moody's remarks was
Hope. He said :



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THE WORK OF GRACE IN NEW YORK. 433

If I should question every one here to-day I have no doubt
each would be found with a hope. But is it a true or a false
hope I If it is false it is worse than none. Job speaks about
the hypocrite, and says : " Will God hear his cry when trouble
cometh upon him." Solomon says in Proverbs that " the hope
of the unjust man shall perish." If you have false hopes of
heaven, the best thing you can do is to give them up. For
what are they good for ? Will they bear you over Jordan ? Will
they sustain you beyond the grave ? But true hope is not in
regard to eternal life. That is secured to us if we are born of
God. Our hopes are of the resurrection of Christ. His second
coming and our own resurrection. It is written, u He that be-
lieveth hath eternal life." The Lord himself shall descend from
heaven, the dead shall be raised, and we shall meet Him in the
air. It is a glorious hope. All that believe shall rise. That
is a hope sure and steadfast Some one says that joy is like a
lark that sings in the morning, but hope is like a nightingale
that sings in the night. We won't need hope after we get to
heaven. But it takes us there. You can have Christ and this
hope to-day if you will. " He came unto His own and His own
received Him not, but as many as received Him to them gave
He power."

After a prayer and the singing of the hymn, " Tis the promise
of God full salvation to give," the Rev. Dr. Anderson spoke
briefly. The Rev. Dr. White said that many persons cherished
a hope that they would prepare for the future late in life. But
the apostle says, " How shall ye escape if ye neglect so great
salvation ? "

Mr. Sankey then sang a hymn alone, and a season of silent
prayer followed, after which the Rev. Dr. Hall said: "The
word of the living God is the warrant for our belief and hope.
There are delusive hopes, and how shall a man know that his is
of the true type ? A man knows bis own failings ; he has an
inner consciousness of these. He knows if his hope be a well-
grounded one. True hope is elevating, purifying, and makes a
man God-like according as it is strong."

Mr. Wells announced that the Committee had set apart Sat

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urday for special prayer for Christian work, and that he pro-
posed now to have a prayer-meeting. What we need now is
prayer, more prayer for Christian work, for Christ work, that
brought Him from heaven to this earth of ours, the work for
which He hung upon the cross. The only way I take strength
in prayer is to take the Bible and lay my hand upon it and say,
" Lord, Thou hast said it" We have an invitation to prayer.
Let us accept it

Mr. Wells then drew some instructive conclusions from the
prayer of David, after which he related an incident of a little
girl who came to him the other night, and said : " If there
should be a little chil4 who has not been brought to God, I
should like him to come to me." I went down into the au-
dience, and saw a mother with a boy by her side, and I went up
to her and said : " Is your boy a Christian ? " She said : " No ;
but I wish he was." I said : " Johnny, would you like to be a
Christian?" He said: "I don't know." I took that little
child by the hand and led him to the little girl and left them
together. When I came by, about fifteen minutes afterwards,
they were both on their knees, praying. When the litde boy
came down, he said to his mother : " Mamma, have you found
Jesus ? — I found Him up there in the gallery." I went home
with that little girl, and she said to her mother : " Only think,
Jesus let me tell that little boy the way to Him."
Again Mr. Moody discoursing on Faith said :
But now the question is, Who shall we have faith in ? A man
got up in one of our young men's meetings the other night and
wanted to know why it was there were so many that backslid.
One reason for backsliding is because men are not sound in
their faith ; it is because they have not really been converted to
God. A good many men are converted to a church ; they say,
<4 1 like that church ; it is a beautiful church, and there is beau*
"tiful singing ; I like that quartet choir and the grand organ, and
there is a good minister." And so they are converted to the
church, and they are converted to the singing, and converted
to tbe organ, and converted to the minister, or they are con-
verted to the people that go there. They get into good society



THE WORK OF GRACE IN NEW YORK. 435

by going there. But that is not being born of God, or being
converted to God. Once there was an old chap sat down
among some army soldiers, who were telling stories of adven-
ture, and one fellow got up and told all about how he had back-
slid, but the old soldier said, " I think there is some mistake
and the truth of the matter is that you have never yet slid for-
ward." Now if a man has faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, he
has got something he can anchor to, and the anchor will bold ;
and when the hour of temptation comes to him, and the hour
of trial comes to him, the man will stand firm. If we are only
converted to man and our faith is in man, we will certainly be
disappointed. How very often we hear a man say, " There is
a member of the church who cheated me out of five dollars, and
I am not going to have anything more to do with people who
call themselves Christians." But if the man had had faith in
Jesus Christ, you do not suppose he would have had his faith
shattered because some one cheated him out of five dollars, do
you ? What we want is some one to have faith in the Lord
Jesus Christ Turn to the prophecy of Jeremiah, 17th chap-
ter, beginning with the 5th verse : " Thus saith the Lord, Cursed
be the man that trusteth in man and maketh flesh his arm, and
whose heart departeth from the Lord. Blessed is the man that
trusteth in the Lord and whose hope the Lord is." But cursed
is the man who puts his trust in man ; that is the reason why so
many people are all the time being disappointed, and why there
are so many that find their faith shaken. It is because they
have been trusting in man, and man has failed them, and they
have been trusting in themselves, and their hearts are deceitful
and desperately wicked, and we cannot have trust in ourselves ;
and because man has failed us, or because we have failed our-
selves, we think God will fail us. But if we put our trust in
the God of Jacob, He will surely not fail us.

At the close of his sermon he said : " I can't help but think
that we have had the best meeting to-night that we ever had. I
am glad to see so many here." " Faith," he seems fitted to ex-
pound, for a man who has known him long and well said the
other day, u He has the largest faith of any man 1 ever kn;w."

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rns tnorougn stuay 01 me DiDie, ro we exclusion 01 almost every
other book, has disciplined him in the use of simple and direct
speech. Before his Bible Mr. Moody bows with a sublime rev-
erence, lie once said it was worth more than all the libraries
in Europe. A learned clergyman has said, " Give me a book
that is Bibler than this Bible and I'll accept it" Mr. Moody
one evening held his Bible at arm's length above and beyond bis
head, and said if any one would offer him a better book he would
make the exchange. " But don't ask me," he continued, " to
give up this book until you can offer a better one in its place."
With God supreme above all things, and full of love and mercy,
the ideal Christian is to Mr. Moody one who accepts this love
in all its fullness, and bows in supreme humility before it He
must banish bis pride, cease to value the successes and honors
of life, and have an unbounded faith in God, and be willing " to
get down in the dust like Abraham, and work and wait for the
blessing."

When Mr. Moody had finished his sermon, he asked the ladies
and the men to separate and form meetings in each of the halls,
which was done, while the choir sang " Only trust Him." A
marked interest was developed at these meetings, and the in-
quiry-rooms were thronged until a late hour.

Fourth Week of Revival.

The attendance was gratifying in spite of the unfavorable
weather, and on some occasions overwhelming. Mr. Moody an-
nounced every evening that he would address the young men of
the city on Sunday morning, his subject being " The Prophet
Daniel." Tickets to the number of seven thousand were issued,
and five thousand of them were limited in the distribution ex-
clusively to young men, the remaining two thousand being given
to any others that might apply for them. The influence of the
soft Spring morning, and the general publicity given to the sub-
ject of the meeting, had the effect of bringing out a very large
attendance — the largest that has ever been seen in the building
on Sunday morning. In the course of his sermon Mr. Moody
said :



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THE WORK OF GRACE IN NEW YORK. 437

'When Daniel went to Babylon he took his stand ; the meat
and the wine which were offered him he refused to eat He
knew that the wine had been offered up to idols, and he refused
to partake of what had been thus polluted. He saw that the
law of God and the law of the great king Nebuchadnezzar were
in conflict, but he obeyed the law of God. He was a man of
faith and of belief. In ten days he looked healthier than any
of those who ate as the king had ordered. He had taken his
stand for God and God blessed him. Young man, you that
have just come to New York, is there not a lesson in this story
for you ? Does your employer ask you to work on Sunday ?
Take your stand If God's law conflicts with man's, adhere to
the living God. He will help you. You may have promised
that loving, praying mother of yours that you would not go to
the theatre. Are you tempted to go ? Does some friend invite
you and urge you to go with him ? Take your stand. Learn to
say no. Yield with no compromise. It is this miserable, com-
promising spirit that ruins so many. Supposing we of these
times had been in Babylon when Daniel was tempted. Why,
we'd advised something like this : " Now, Daniel, you know you
are not in Jerusalem. You're a poor heathen captive " — now
here's the advice of the Christianity of the nineteenth century—
"you're in Babylon, Daniel, and do as the people of Babylon
do. You know wine is better than water, and water won't
agree with you. The water of the Euphrates will make you
sick. We know the wine has been offered to idols, but God
will wink at it if you drink while you are down here." But
thank God, that man took his stand and kept his faith.

The king had a dream, and Daniel said, " 111 tell the king his
dream ; only give me time." Ah, see what faith he had. He
knew that God would keep him right And that night he
prayed long and faithfully that God would reveal the secret
He went to sleep, and had a dream, in which God revealed the
secret. He arose and went to the king, and was asked if he could
tell the dream. Daniel, with the same faith in God, said that his
God was able ; and gave God all the glory. He told the king
what he had dreamed, how his Chaldean kingdom would be

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43& MOODY AND SANKEY IN AMERICA.

overthrown and divided, bow Greeks and Romans and others
would overrun it and divide its possessions. " That's my dream,"
said Nebuchadnezzar, and an edict went forth making Daniel a
ruler among the mighty. But another trial came. The king
ordered his image to be set up on the plains. There are three
men who will not bow down to it They are Shadrach, Me-
shach, and Abed-nego. And the king is very angry, and or-
dered the furnace to be heated ten times hotter. And when
they came forth with not so much as a hair of their heads
burned, another edict went forth that any man who said any-
thing against the God of Shadrach shall incur the wrath of the
king. Young man, will you take your stand as those men did ?

" Ah," said Mr. Moody, " the time is up ; just made a be-
ginning. I'll finish it next Sunday morning. Mr. Sankey will
now sing ' Dare to be a Daniel. ' "

Noticeable features in all of Mr. Moody's preaching are the
depth of feeling and abundance of ideas which he seems unable
to express. Many times he suffers under very strong emotions,
and his thoughts come so fast, and sometimes in such confused
forms, that he is wholly unable to find relief in words. Last
evening he was more deeply moved than he has ever been be-
fore since be came to New York. His theme was the compas-
sion of Christ, and was more capable than almost any other of
producing such an effect upon him. " Go with me," he said,
" up Mount Calvary to-night to where the Son of God hangs
between two thieves, and before the Roman centurion smites
Him in the side with a spear, hear Him say ' Father forgive
them, for they know not what they do.' " He also referred to the
Saviour weeping over Jerusalem, and said that wherever He
saw human suffering " the great heart of the Son of God was
moved with compassion." " Won't you receive him," he asked
in almost piteous tones, " and do you see no beauty in him
that you like ? " Turning to several gentlemen in the pulpit
he called them by name and said, " Didn't you come here
in Christ's name?" and being answered in the affirmative,
he faced the audience and leaned over the railing, saying in a
half-weeping voice, "Ah, the Son of God is here to-night Do



Online LibraryEdgar Johnson GoodspeedA full history of the wonderful career of Moody and Sankey in Great Britain ... → online text (page 37 of 64)