Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth; and one convert him; Let him know that he which converteth sinner from the error of his way, shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.
Next to our own salvation, I am sure, as Christians, we shall always prize the salvation of other people; we shall always desire that what has been so sweet to our own taste, may also be tasted by others; and what has been of so inestimably precious a value to our own souls, may also become the property of all those whom God may please to shall unto everlasting life. I am sure, beloved, now that I am about to preach concerning the conversion of the ungodly, you will take as deep an interest in it as if it were something that immediately concerned your own souls, for, after all, such were some of you once.
Our text has in it, first of all, a principle involved—that of instrumentality.—“Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; let him know that he who converteth a sinner from the error of his way, shall save a soul from death.” Secondly, here is a general fact stated:—“He who converteth a sinner from the error of his way, shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.” And thirdly, there is a particular application of this fact made. “Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth and one convert him,”—that is the same principle as when a sinner is converted “from the error of his way.”
Secondly, we make another remark, which is, that instrumentality is very honorable to God, and not dishonorable. One would think, perhaps, at first sight, that it would reflect more glory to God, if he effected all conversions himself, without the use of men; but that is a great mistake. It is as honorable to God to convert by means of Christians and others, as it would be if he should effect it alone.
The true motive for which we should always labor, is the glory of God in the conversion of souls; and building up of God’s people; but let us never lose sight of the great end. Let God be glorified; and he will be, if we preach his truth faithfully and honestly.
Again, you may be the means of conversion by a letter you may write. Many of you have not the power to speak or say much; but when you sit down alone in your chamber you are able, with God’s help, to write a letter to a dear friend of yours. Oh! I think that is a very sweet way to endeavor to be useful. I think I never felt so much earnestness after the souls of my fellow-creatures as when I first loved the Saviour’s name, and though I could not preach, and never thought I should be able to testify to the multitude, I used to write texts on little scraps of paper and drop them anywhere, that some poor creatures might pick them up, and receive them as messages of mercy to their souls. There is your brother. He is careless and hardened. Sister, sit down and write a letter to him, when he receives it, he will perhaps smile, but he will say, “Ah, well! it is Betsy’s letter after all!” And that will have some power. I knew a gentleman, whose dear sister used often to write to him concerning his soul. “I used,” said he, “to stand with my back up against a lamp-post, with a cigar in my mouth, perhaps at two o’clock in the morning, to read her letter. I always read them; and I have,” said he, “wept floods of tears after reading my sister’s letters. Though I still kept on the error of my ways, they always checked me, they always seemed a hand pulling me away from sin; a voice crying out,” Come back! come back!’” And at last a letter from her, in conjunction with a solemn providence, was the means of breaking his heart, and he sought salvation through a Saviour.
Again. How many nave been converted by the example of true Christians. Many of you feel that you cannot write or preach, and you think you can do nothing. Well, there is one thing you can do for your Master—you can live Christianity.
And then how many souls may be converted by what some men are privileged to write and print.
Oh! to think that we may write and print books which shall reach poor sinners’ hearts.
Oh! men and women, how can ye better spend your time and wealth than in the cause of the Redeemer? What holier enterprise can ye engage in than this sacred one of saving souls from death, and hiding a multitude of sins?© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible