479) Trust in God’s Word, Not in Your Feelings

From a sermon by Dwight L. Moody:

     I thank God my salvation don’t rest upon my feelings.  I thank God my hope is not centered on my feelings.  If it was, it would be a very treacherous thing.  I would be very hopeful one day and cast down the next day.  I would not give much for a hope that is anchored in my feelings.  I would not give much for a hope that is based upon my treacherous heart.  But I tell you that a hope based upon Jesus Christ’s Word is a hope worth having.  He said it; let us believe it; let us lay hold of it by faith.  “Truly, truly,” he said, “he that heareth my word and believeth on Him that sent Me hath everlasting life.”  I have heard it.  Satan can’t make me believe that I have not.  I have read it.  I have handled it.  It don’t say that you shall have it when you come to die, but have it right here this afternoon, before you go out of this church.  That is a hope worth having, isn’t it?  “Hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation, but passed from death unto life.”  There is my hope.  I have stood there for twenty-odd years.  I have been assailed by doubts.  I have been assailed by unbelief.  I have been attacked by the enemy of all righteousness; but I tell you for twenty-odd years I have been able to stand fair and square right on that rock.  God said it.  I believe it.  God said it.  I lay hold of it, and I rest right there.  What we want is to let our hope go down like an anchor into the word of God, and that gives us something to rest upon.  

     A great many people are waiting for some feeling.  I will venture to say that more than half of this audience have come here today and taken their seats in the hope that something will be said that shall impress them…  You will find that the church is full of people who are waiting for something to strike them.  What we should want is to take God’s Word and let the feelings take care of themselves.  God said it, I believe it, and I will rest my soul upon the Word of God, not upon my feelings.

Dwight L. Moody (1837-1899) was a shoe salesman and businessman whose conversion set in motion one of the most powerful and fruitful evangelistic ministries of the 19th century.  A plain-spoken, unpolished layman, Moody was one of the most inspiring and influential Christians of  his era, in both the United States and Great Britain.  He began as a Sunday School teacher and then served as a lay minister on Civil War battlefields.  His unquenchable conviction of Christ’s love for sinners like himself, and his sympathetic love for all people, gained him an extraordinarily wide hearing.  Thousands were converted and inspired by his preaching, and under his influence many schools and Christian philanthropies were begun.  A number, most prominently Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, remain to this day, still fruitful and faithful to the vision of their founder.  The above excerpt, grammatical errors and all, was taken from The Best of Dwight L. Moody, edited by Ralph Turnbull, 1971, Baker Book House, p. 164-5.  (from Touchstone magazine)

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John 5:24  —  (Jesus said), “Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.”

Romans 10:17  —  Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.

John 10:27-28  —  (Jesus said), “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; and I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch them out of my hand.”

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A PRAYER BY DWIGHT L. MOODY:

Use me, my Savior, for whatever purpose and in whatever way you require.  Here is my poor heart, an empty vessel:  fill it with your grace.  Here is my sinful and troubled soul:  bring it to life and refresh it with your love.  Take my heart for you to live in, my mouth to spread abroad the glory of your name; my love and all my powers for the advancement of your believing people; and never allow the steadfastness and confidence of my faith to abate.  Amen.