“God was manifested in the flesh… believed on in the world.”
I Tim. 3:16
There truly are none who are beyond the love or reach of God. Consider these testimonies—
First, the ordinary woman who loved the Lord from her earliest days. The mother of John Phillips was a devout believer. All her days the humming of hymns could be heard from her. Upon her death in a Florida retirement home, the Bible on her bed was open to Psalm 23. Marking that passage, she had written, “The secret of a happy life! The secret of a happy death! The secret of a happy eternity! With those thoughts in her mind, she went from grace to glory.
Now, let us consider the well-known author of so much of the New Testament, yet the most unlikely candidate to be a follower of Jesus. Of course, I write of Saul of Tarsus. He hated Christ and detested Christianity. His life was dedicated to destroying the young church. His mind and body “breathed out threats and slaughter.” Saul, who became Paul, himself said he had voted the death sentence of many believers. It took one glimpse of the risen Lord to make him believe in Him and become the author of great chapter on love of I Corinthians 13.
Thirdly, the Chicago shoe salesman who was determined to make a fortune. He was led to Christ in the back of a shoe store where employed. Brash and bold, D. L. Moody was on his way up quickly. Instead of a bold & brash shoe salesman, he became an enthusiastic soul winner inviting individuals and crowds to know the love of his Lord Jesus. Moody heard one say:“ the world had not yet to see what God could do through a man who was wholly yielded to Him,” and he responded, “By the grace of God, I’ll be that man.” The Lord privileged him to be used as a tool to see great numbers respond to the invitation to salvation from his God.
“Amazing Grace” writer, John Newton has quite a testimony… like each person does. A born rebel, he ran away to sea and sunk to the darkest depths of degradation and despair. He became the slave of a slave. While on the heaving deck, in a sea-storm, he sensed the Lord peering into his sick soul… shocked he was worth redeeming. There are not many throughout the world, who are not familiar with the lyrics of this well-known pastor and hymn writer.
Finally let me write of Sophie. Her last name not noted—known simply as “Sophie the scrubwoman.” She was uneducated, yet yearned to be a missionary. No mission organization thought her to be qualified for their objectives. Counseling with noted pastor of her time, Dr. A.B. Simpson, he told her to go home and pray. She returned to Simpson a week later with joy from realizing the Lord brought the mission-field to her. In the great melting-pot community of New York city, there in her neighborhood were families from China, those from Italy and others from Greece. She sensed the Lord brought them all to New York so she could share the gospel with them. Sophie the scrubwoman took her ministry to heart. At her funeral the line was long, with people from a variety of ethnicities and generations who testified that it was Sophie who led them to Christ. Truly the God of Sophie and the others above, was “believed on in the world.”