Thursday, March 27, 2008

That the glory may go to God

Springtime flowers

When I have sometimes had it flung in my teeth — “This man was never educated at college; this man came into the ministry in literary attainments totally unprepared for it; he is only fit to address the poor; his ministry is not polite and polished, he has but little classical instruction; he cannot read forty languages,” I say Precisely so; every word of it is true, and a great deal more. I would not stay you, if you will go on, if you will just show me more my folly, if you will just discover to me yet more my want of prudence, if the wise man would say, “This man takes a daring project in hand and does not consult any man, does not able anybody about it, but goes and does it like a madman,” — just so, precisely so; I will agree to the whole of it; but when I have said this I will remind you that “God hath chosen the base things of this world to confound the mighty, and the things that are not to bring to nought the things that are.” On this wise I will put it, in this thing I will become a fool in glorying, — What have your college men done that is comparable to this work? What have the wisest and most instructed of modern ministers done in the conversion of souls compared with the work of the unlettered boy? It was God’s work, and God chose the most unfitting instrument that he might have the more glory.

From a sermon entitled "'Even So, Father!'," delivered May 26, 1861. Flickr photo by Bea; some rights reserved.

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