Sermon 2856. Our Hiding Place
A SERMON PUBLISHED ON THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 1903.
DELIVERED BY C. H. SPURGEON,
AT THE METROPOLITAN TABERNACLE, NEWINGTON, ON LORD'S-DAY EVENING, NOVEMBER 11, 1877.
"And a man shall be as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest." Isaiah 32:2.
[When the Tabernacle was thrown open to all comers.]
ONE who is really worthy to be called "a man" is a rare creature. There are great numbers of human beings who come under thegeneric name, "men," who do not possess those noble, manly characteristics which would entitle us truly to speak of any oneof them as "a man." When God gives "a man" to any nation, it is a grand gift. There are many names in history which remindus how much blessing may be conferred upon a race and upon an age by the raising up of one
It is possible that in the first instance my text refers to Hezekiah the king of Judah. The Assyrians had invaded the landand the army and the nation were powerless to defend their territory. It seemed as though the homes of the people would beutterly destroyed by fire and that the inhabitants would be either slain by the sword or carried away into captivity. Butthere was one man, named Hezekiah, who, though he had not a great army, had great faith in the power of prayer to God. Andso he took Rab-Shakeh's blasphemous letter and spread it before the Lord in earnest supplication. He sent word to anothertrue man, the Prophet Isaiah, begging him to also lift up his prayer to God-and the Prophet sent to the king the cheeringintelligence that the Assyrian monarch would not be able to enter Jerusalem, but would be driven back to his own city of Nineveh-andshould be slain by the sword in his own land! Hezekiah and Isaiah were, for Judea, a hiding place from the wind and a coverfrom the tempest in that time of stress and storm.
Nor is it only in sacred story that we find illustrations of such an experience as my text describes. I might remind you ofsome of our kings and other great men who have been a hiding place and a cover to our own land in the day of danger and ofdistress. The name of Alfred the Great will always shine brightly in our national history and, much later, there was "a man"who wore no regal crown, but who was the greatest and best of all the kings. Oliver Cromwell was a real hiding place and coverto this land in the days when the crowned king was unworthy to rule. In him, God raised up "a man" who risked everything indefense of the liberties which we still enjoy. What a hiding place from the wind and what a cover from the tempest he wasto the little company of persecuted saints in the valleys of Piedmont! The Duke of Savoy had determined to extirpate the Protestants,but Cromwell heard of his cruelties and resolved that he would do all that he could to rescue them from their persecutor'spower.
He sent for the French ambassador and told him to let his master know that he must have those persecutions stopped immediately.His majesty replied that Savoy did not belong to him and that he could not interfere with the Duke. "Nevertheless," repliedCromwell, "if you tell the Duke that you will go to war with him if he does not cease persecuting the Protestants, he willsoon stop his butcheries. If you will not do that, I will go to war with you, for, in the name of the Lord of Hosts, I willdefend His persecuted people!" Of course such a brave message as that speedily took effect. Oh, that, in every age, in everyland-whenever and wherever there is oppression or persecution to be rebuked and tyranny to be overthrown-God may always find"a man" who shall come boldly to the front and speak and act for truth and righ-
teousness, and so become "a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest," to the people whom he has the honorto protect in such a time as that!
I have no more to say upon that view of our subject except to pray God to make us all manly in that sense, so that all ofus may, through His Grace, take our proper place in the battle for the right and the true against the wrong and the false.
I have, however, to speak of another Man to whom this text more especially refers. It is the Messiah, the Man Christ Jesus,the Mediator between God and men-God's greatest gift to men, the Nazarene, Jesus Christ of the house of Da-vid-who is thetrue Hiding Place from the wind, and Cover from the tempest to all who take shelter in Him. If my lips are Divinely helpedto extol Him and if your hearts are Divinely taught to rejoice in Him, we shall all be blessed! In speaking about my text,I want to show you, first, that this life is very liable to storm. Secondly, that from all these storms, the Man Christ Jesusis our Hiding Place. And that, thirdly, our wisdom is to shelter in that Hiding Place.
I. First, then, THIS LIFE IS LIABLE TO MANY STORMS.
He that reckons upon a calm from his cradle to his grave reckons altogether amiss. You may set sail upon a sea as smooth asglass, but I doubt not that, before your voyage is completed, you will often have to reel to and fro and stagger like a drunkenman-and be at your wits' end by reason of the fury of the storm!
We are subject to great mental storms. No man can be a true thinker without finding his mind occasionally storm-tossed. Arushing mighty wind of doubt seems to come sweeping down from the mountains of speculation, driving everything before it.Anchors begin to drag and firmly moored beliefs are driven headlong towards the rocks of destruction. We have known what itis, sometimes, to have such a terrible cyclone of doubt and questioning raging around us that we have hardly felt our ownexistence to be a fact and have had grave questions concerning our own inner consciousness. When we have these stormy windsand tempests howling within the little world of our souls, we appreciate the promise of the text-"A man shall be as a hidingplace from the wind, and a cover from the tempest."
At other times, the stormy winds take another shape, namely, that of outward trial and trouble. "Man is born unto trouble,as the sparks fly upward." Doubtless, there is a skeleton in every house-some cause of sorrow in every family. A man may havea flourishing business, but there may come serious losses. Or he may have the flush of health upon his cheeks and may suddenlybegin to lose his vigor. The little ones around him who are his joy, may sicken and he may have to follow his loved ones tothe grave. The wife of his youth may be taken away from him or the friend of his middle age may suddenly be smitten down.The world is full of what we sometimes call, "accidents," though we know that they are Providences-Providences of a sad andmournful character to us. God will not let us, who are His songbirds, build our nests here. He will send a rough wind throughthe forest which will make the limb on which we try to build rock to and fro in the storm till we are obliged to take to ourwings again, for there is no resting place for us upon any of the trees in this world! Many of you only too well know thatthere are rough winds of outward trial and trouble. I do not doubt that many a stormy blast has swept across your heart, inyour families, or in yourselves, or in your estates. Some way or other, you have realized your need of "a hiding place fromthe wind, and a cover from the tempest."
Then there is a wind which sometimes blows upon men-a penetrating, searching, cutting wind-which may bring good with it, butwhich, at the time it is blowing, is a truly terrible wind to endure! I mean that of spiritual distress on account of discoveredsinwhen, looking into your soul, you have spied out what you could not have believed was there. Sins and iniquities whichhad long hidden their heads, have suddenly appeared before you and you have been almost swept off your feet as by a tornado!I recollect when that wind blew through and through my soul. No comfort could I get by day or by night. My transgressionshaunted and hunted me. I had not been worse than other young men, nor as bad as many whom I knew, but I seemed so to myself.It appeared to me as if I had become the very chief of sinners and the most surely condemned of all who ever lived! Rememberingthe experience I then passed through, I can truly say that I know of no pain that can be felt by the body which is comparableto the terrible pangs of conscience when the searching breath of the Eternal Spirit goes through the soul and withers up allthe comeliness of our own righteousness and spoils all the supposed beauty of our own good works! That is a wind which I trustwe all have felt, or shall yet feel, but, still, while it blows, it is dreadful to endure.
There is another wind which follows upon this and of which this is the prelude unless Infinite Grace shall interpose, thatis, the awful wind of the Infinite Wrath of God. When that mighty blast begins to blow upon men, it makes their
beauty to consume like the moth. When they first realize that "God is angry with the wicked every day," they tremble in HisPresence! But what will their terror be when that wind is let loose upon them in all its fury? When God's right arm shallbe bared for war and thunders shall clothe His cloudy car, and He shall come forth armed with sword and buckler to confrontHis foes, saying "I will ease Me of My adversaries"-who shall be able to stand before Him? Good Mr. Whi-tefield used to cry,"Oh, the wrath to come! The wrath to come!" And, verily, I know not what he could have said about it except to utter the exclamation-andthere to leave it-for that wrath to come must surpass all human language or imagination! Sometimes it blows upon men beforethey leave the body-they begin to be caught by the eternal whirlwind before they have quite got clear of the shores of timeand mortal life. And some of them have let us know, by their terrible terror as they have died, a little of what that awfulblast must mean to those who are swept away by it.
I will mention but one other wind and that is one to which the best of men, as well as the worst, are exposed- namely, thesudden and mysterious temptations of the devil He knows how to take us unawares and he finds in our natural depravity, anally, so that when he comes and knocks at the door of our heart, the sin that is within arises and opens to him. And thenhe comes in and terrible is his entrance into the soul! I have known a young man who appeared to be upright and honest, suddenlydecoyed into an act of theft by the temptation of the Evil One. I have seen those who have been, apparently, pure in mindand heart and who, at any rate in their youth, dreaded every thought of immorality-all of a sudden cast down into the verydepths of filthiness by a strong Satanic temptation which has assailed them. There is no man living who can truly say, "Iam secure against the devil's assaults." You may resolve as you please, but Satan is older and more cunning than you are,and he knows your weak points and how he can most easily cast you down. He is the prince of the power of the air, and he canbring with him such a wind as shall smite the four corners of the human house at once and level it to the ground. Woe to theman who is tempted by the devil in such a way as that, unless he has a hiding place wherein to shelter himself in the stormyand dark day!
I hope I have said enough upon this point. If I go on in this strain, you will think that my sermon is like the roll of theProphet, written within and without with lamentations and woe.
II. Now, in the second place, blessed be God that I can tell you that FROM ALL THESE STORMS THE MAN
CHRIST JESUS IS OUR HIDING PLACE. I have to try to set Him before you by the help of His Holy Spirit. "A man shall be as ahiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest." It is to Him we sing-
"The tempests awful voice was heard-
O Christ, it broke on You!
Your open bosom was my ward,
It braved the storm for me.
Your form was scarred, Your visage marred-
Now cloudless peace for me." "A man"-yet One who is more than a man-a Man of whom it is written, "In the beginning was theWord, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." It is the Man Christ Jesus who is, nevertheless, to be adored as "overall God, blessed forever," reigning, as He now does, in the highest heavens, crowned with glory and honor. I invite all ofyou who are afraid of the storms of doubt, or trial, or temptation, or of the wrath of God, to put your trust in the LordJesus Christ, because, being God, He is Omnipotent and, therefore, nothing can be too difficult for Him. Once enclosed withinHis hands, where is the power that can reach you there, or pluck you from them? If your shield shall be the Almighty One,Himself, then are you secure from all hurt or harm!
Yet, as the text says, "a man shall be as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest," I remark that Christis truly a Man. Oh, how often, in the thought of Christ's real Humanity, has my soul found a hiding place from all mannerof storms! "God"-the word is great! "God"-the idea is sublime! The great Eternal Jehovah who made the heavens and the earthand who bears them up by His unaided power, who rides upon the stormy sky and puts a bit into the mouth of the raging tempest,how shall I, a poor worm of the dust, draw near to such a God as this? The answer quickly comes, "He has been pleased to revealHimself in the Man, Christ Jesus." "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses untothem." God deigned to take upon Himself the nature of man! There He lies in the manger, the Infinite, yet an Infant, Omnipotent,yet swaddled by a woman and hanging as though helpless at her breast. Let Bethlehem always tell the matchless mystery of godliness-Godmanifest in human flesh! Why
should I dread to appear before God, now that, in the Person of His Son, Jesus Christ, there is a link between my manhoodand His Deity?
The awful gulf that sin had made is bridged and now I perceive how near God comes down to man and how closely He lifts upman to Himself. Jesus Christ was truly Man! With the exception of being free from sin, He was in no respect different fromourselves. And at this moment, though He occupies the very Throne of God in Glory, His sympathies run towards us-
"He knows what sore temptations mean. For He has felt the same."
He is ready to succor us, for His delights are still with the sons of men. He became a Man because He loved men. God has suchaffection for our race that He has married our nature to Himself. Oh, what joy there ought to be in our hearts because ofthis! Whenever the thought of the greatness, the holiness and the terrible majesty of God oppresses anyone of us, let himsay, with good Dr. Watts-
"Till God in human flesh I see,
My thoughts no comfort find.
The holy, just, and sacred Three
Are terrors to my mind.
But if Immanuel's face appears,
My hope, my joy begins!
His name forbids my slavish fear,
His Grace removes my sins."
The very fact that God has become Incarnate makes Him to be a Hiding Place from the wind and a Cover from the tempest.
Further, Christ is the substitutionary Man, for He stood forward as the Man to die instead of guilty men. Have you not oftenheard this life called a state of probation? That is a most incorrect term, for our probationary period passed away long ago.There was a man, the first of men, Adam-and the whole human race was put upon probation in him. If he had obeyed his Maker'scommand, all his seed would have lived by virtue of his obedience. But as he disobeyed, his entire race has suffered. He couldnot endure the test applied to him, for he ate of the forbidden fruit and so fell from his high estate. And, in his fall,you, and I, and all mankind fell down. We fell in another-we had nothing to do with the matter, for it all happened thousandsof years before we were born. Some have questioned the justice of this arrangement. If you have done so, I pray you to layaside all such questions, for this is the door of hope for you! Because our fall was caused by another, there remained thepossibility-on the same plan of representation and substitution-of our being lifted up by Another and saved by Another! So,in the fullness of time there came a second Man, the Lord from Heaven, and stood in our place. Did He obey the Law of God?For 30 years and more He was upon His trial, but He never failed. "In Him was no sin."
But man was under condemnation because of his guilt-will Jesus Christ, as the great Substitute for sinners-bear upon Himselfthe punishment due to human guilt? He could not have borne it if He had not been God as well as Man! Being the God-Man, Hesaid that He would bear sin's penalty, that all who would put their trust in Him might forever go free! It was a wondroussight, when, on that awful night in dark Gethsemane, He began to bear His people's guilt and so was made to sweat, as it were,great drops of blood falling down to the ground while His soul was exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death.
I hope you all know the sad yet glad story. I expect most of you have often heard it, how Jesus bore that tremendous loadof our guilt upon His own shoulders though His back was bleeding from Pilate's cruel scourging. How He bore it though theynailed His hands and feet to the accursed tree. How He bore it though the sun refused to look upon Him and traveled on intenfold night. How He bore it though Jehovah, Himself, forsook Him while He was bearing our sins in His own body on the tree,so that He was compelled to cry, "My God, My God why have You forsaken Me!" He bore that terrible burden right to the end!And on the Cross He cried, "It is finished," before He gave up the ghost. This is the Man who is the Hiding Place from thestorm, and the Cover from the tempest, the substitutionary Man, the surety Man who stood in the place of guilty man-the justMan bearing, instead of unjust man-the deserved wrath of God!
If you, my dear Friends, will only put your trust in Him, you will find Him to be a blessed Cover from the storm that is nowthreatening you. How can God's wrath touch you if Christ has borne it all in your place? A hiding place shelters a man becauseit bears the full force of the storm while he is protected from it fury. Because Christ died for us, therefore we, who takeshelter in Him, shall not die! Our debt is paid, Justice is satisfied, Mercy triumphs and we go free! This is the Man, thesubstitutionary Man, who is "as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest," to all who put their trust inHim!
That is not all, however, for this substitutionary Man remains the representative Man. And if you are Believers in Him, Herepresents you in everything. He died, but He also rose again-what a shelter from all tempestuous thoughts of death thereis in that glorious Truth! For-
"As the Lord our Savior rose, So all His followers must."
The wind howls sadly out yonder among the tombs in the cemetery. One would scarcely choose to spend a night there, alone,among the dead, but even that mournful wind, when it is heard by the ear of faith, has music in it. That ancient message isyet to be fulfilled, "Your dead men shall live, together with My dead body shall they arise." This is what Christ says tous, so we need not stand by the pious dead and weep as those without hope, but we may already begin to anticipate the dawningof that glorious morning when, at the summons of the descending Savior, "the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we whichare alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we alwaysbe with the Lord."
Jesus, therefore, as our Representative, is a Hiding Place to us from all the winds which would come to us by the way of thesepulcher. We are not afraid to die, for Jesus lives. And He said to His disciples, "Because I live, you shall live, also."He has also gone up into Heaven. In His glorified body He ascended up on high, there to appear in the Presence of God forus. So, whenever you have any dread about the future, remember that you will be where He is. If you are a Believer in Him,you must ascend to Heaven even as He has done and, as He sits upon His Throne, even so shall you! And as He is perfected inGlory, even so must you be! Between the Man, Christ Jesus, and all Believers in Him, there is such unity that wherever Heis, there must His people also be. This is what He rightfully demands on their behalf, by virtue of His atoning Sacrifice-"Father,I will that they, also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may behold My Glory, which You have givenMe: for You loved Me before the foundation of the world." If you hide behind this rampart of stupendous Rock, this mightymound of Divine Consolation, it matters not what winds may rage, or what storms may roar-you may rest in security and serenitybehind the great representative Man who is "as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest."
We also have to bless the name of our Lord Jesus that He is the ever-living Man, who is, at all times, a shelter from thewind to those who trust in Him. Our earthly friends may die, but we shall never lose our Best Friend. All merely human comforterswill fail us sooner or later, but He will always abide true and steadfast to all who rely upon Him-
"He lives, the great Redeemer lives," so His cause is always safe and our safety is always secured in Him. Hide yourself,therefore, in the ever-living Man, for there you need not fear any change that the rolling ages may bring.
Blessed be the name of Jesus! He is also the interceding Man, for at this very moment He is pleading for His people beforeHis Father's Throne. We cannot see Him, yet sometimes when our faith is in lively exercise, we can almost behold Him and canall but hear Him presenting His almighty pleas on behalf of all those who have entrusted their case into His hands. O Beloved-
"In every dark distressful hour When sin and Satan join their power, Let this dear hope repel the dart, That Jesus bears uson His heart."
If nobody else remembers us, He does-and He spreads His wounded hands in powerful, prevalent intercession on our behalf. Andour comfort is that "He is also able to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He always lives to makeintercession for them."
It is true that He is a Man, but He is a Man clothed with Infinite Power. So think no longer of the Christ as "despised andrejected of men: a Man of Sorrows, and acquainted with grief," for He has done with all that! He has ascended from His Crossto His Throne-
"The highest place that Heaven affords Is His, is His by right! The King of kings, and Lord of lords, And Heaven's eternalLight."
Do not look at crucifixes, or any such representations of Christ for He in whom you trust is neither upon the Cross nor inthe tomb for He is risen! "Come, see the place where the Lord lay." But do not forget to look up to the place where He nowsits, for, "this Man, after He had offered one Sacrifice for sins, forever, sat down at the right hand of God; from henceforthexpecting till His enemies be made His footstool."Before He ascended, He said to His disciples, "All power is given unto Mein Heaven and in earth. Go you, therefore, and teach (or, make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them (those who are madedisciples) in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." We serve the Christ whom all His creatures mustobey-angels fly at His bidding and devils tremble at His frown. He allows the kings of the earth to sway their mimic sceptersfor a time, but all the while He is King of kings and Lord of lords! For our Lord Jesus Christ, we claim a universal monarchy!He sits enthroned upon the circle of the heavens, and the nations of the earth are but as grasshoppers before Him-
"Sweet majesty and awful love
Sit smiling on His brow,
And all the glorious ranks above
At humble distance bow.
This is the Man, the exalted Mann,
Whom we unseen adore!
But when our eyes behold His face,
Our hearts shall love Him more!" I close my description of this wondrous Man by reminding you that He is the coming Man. Itis but a little while and He that shall come will come. The great drama of this world's history draws towards its close. Weknow not when it will end, for it is not for us "to know the times or the seasons which the Father has put in His own power."But there comes to us, as a clear, ringing message out of the deep mystery of the future, the voice of our Savior, saying,"Surely I come quickly," to which our glad response is, "Even so, come, Lord Jesus!"
I cannot foretell to what a state of anarchy or of despotism this world may yet come. I cannot forecast the ultimate issuesof great wars and conflicts between divers nations. But the saints of God shall always have a Hiding Place from every stormywind that shall ever blow. "The Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, andwith the trump of God." "He comes to judge the earth: He shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with HisTruth." There shall come a day when that ancient prophecy shall be fulfilled, "He shall live, and to Him shall be given ofthe gold of Sheba: prayer also shall be made for Him continually, and daily shall He be praised." There shall yet come a halcyonperiod when they shall hang the useless helmet high and study war no more-but the silver trumpet of the blessed Jubilee shallsound aloud for Christ, the great Prince of Peace shall then have returned to reign and His unsuffering Kingdom shall knowno end! This is the world's hope, that the people's Christ, the Man chosen out of the people, the Lover of mankind, the greatPhilanthropist, the Divine Man-He shall come and reign among His loyal subjects and be to them "as a hiding place from thewind, and a cover from the tempest."
To sum all up, Beloved, I do not know what your storms, inwardly or outwardly, may be, or what may be your special dread orterror; but if you hide away in the Man Christ Jesus, you will find that He will afford you shelter from every trouble thatcan possibly befall you!
III. So I close my discourse by saying to you, AS THE LORD JESUS CHRIST IS SUCH A HIDING PLACE AS
THIS, LET US RUN TO HIM FOR SHELTER.
First, let us stand behind Him whenever we approach God. I can imagine someone saying, "I want to pray, but I am afraid toappear before the Lord, for, if His eyes of fire shall look upon me, they may utterly consume me. What shall I do?" Why, standbehind His Son and say unto Him-
"Him, and then the sinner see- Look through Jesus' wounds on me."
Come not to God yourself directly, but come unto Him through Jesus Christ the Mediator and Intercessor! Then His wrath cannotreach you, for Christ, your Hiding Place will stand between you, the offender and the God whom you have offended. This seemsto me to be very simple. If there are any here who have never acted thus, I entreat the Lord to lead them to do so now. Come,poor Soul, you know that you cannot keep the Law and that you cannot bear the punishment due to sin! Well, then, will younot trust the Lord Jesus Christ to stand in your place and to suffer instead of you? If you do, all is done that is necessary.You are in the Shelter, so the wind cannot blow upon you.
Even when you have done that, there are the storms of this life still to be met, so get behind Christ by following Him inthe path of duty. If you never go anywhere but where Christ leads the way, you need not be afraid of storms, for they willbeat upon Him more than upon you. When I was quite a young man, I was greatly reviled for preaching the Gospel and, sometimes,my heart would sink a little under the cruel slanders that many uttered. But I often used to go upstairs to my room and, aftera season of sweet fellowship with my Lord, I would come down singing-
"If on my face for Your dear name,
Shame and reproaches be,
All hail reproach, and welcome shame,
If You remember me."
Whenever there is a cross to be carried by any of Christ's followers, He always bears the heavy end on His own shoulders!He always takes the bleak side of the hill, Himself, and His disciples may be well content to follow when they have so gooda Master to lead the way! Yes, Beloved, whenever any of the troubles of life come upon you, get near to Jesus and shelterbehind Him. When John the Baptist was put to death, his disciples took up his body and went and told Jesus. That was the bestthing they could have done. When the little baby dies, dear Mother, take up its body and go and tell Jesus. When you are outof employment, Man, and the supply of bread is short in the home, go and tell Jesus. He will sympathize with you, for He alsowas hungry. And when others of the trials of life come upon any of you, do not hesitate as to what you will do, but, if youhave hidden behind Him on account of sin, go and hide in Him on account of sorrow, for this Man shall always be a Hiding Placefrom every stormy wind that blows if you but know how to go and trust in Him.
Come to my Lord Jesus Christ, my dear fellow men, because He is an effectual Hiding Place. Many of us have tried Him and provedthat He is all that I have said. There have been millions upon millions of His saints, in all ages, who have cast upon Himtheir entire life-burden and He has never failed to relieve any of them yet. I have stood by the bedside of many dying Christians,but, to this moment, I have never heard one of them say that Christ had played him false. There are hosts of biographies ofChristians published-did you ever find, in any of them, a single instance in which a Believer in Christ found Himself desertedand forsaken by his Savior? No, but on the contrary, the testimonies are heaped up far beyond any evidence that ever couldbe demanded in a court of law-and they prove, beyond all question, that Christ helps His children in all their emergenciesand delivers them in every time of trouble!
I appeal to any of you who have had godly parents. What your father tried and your mother tried, young man, I ask you to try!Where your gracious grandmother rested all her hope and you know that, poor simple woman as she was, she died triumphantly-benot you so unwise as to refuse to rest your hope! I like things that have been tried and proved! The new-fangled notions ofthis modern age may do for lackadaisical gentlemen who seem to scarcely know whether they have a soul to lose, but I knowthat I have one, and I cannot afford to risk it on speculations and novelties! That Gospel which has saved the saints fornearly two thousand years is good enough for me-so I trust myself in this ancient Hiding Place of God's people, the refugewhich they have found to be safe in all generations! And I invite all of you, by a simple act of faith in Jesus Christ, todo the same.
"But," says someone, "there are so many sinners in the world! If they were all to come at once into this Hiding Place, wouldthere be room for them?" Oh, yes! For, as the caverns of Engedi could hold all David's men, and Saul's men, too, and yet theyscarcely came near each other, so, in the secret caverns of Almighty Love, in the Person of the Man, Christ Jesus, there isroom enough and to spare for all the sinners who ever lived on the face of the earth! It will never be truly said, "The salvationof God is worn out. The pasture has been fed upon by too many sheep, so it is all gone. The Great
Supper has been all consumed because there were too many guests." Never, never shall this happen! There is room in ChristJesus for every soul that shall ever come to Him. God help you all to come at once!-
"Come, sinner, to the Gospel feast!
Oh, come without delay!
For there is room in Jesus' breast
For all who will obey."
Lastly, this is an available Hiding Place. I think I read, some time ago, of a ship caught in a storm which might not havebeen lost but that the port it was trying to reach could only be entered at high tide. As the tide was low, the poor vesselhad to stay outside to be dashed to pieces within sight of the harbor. My Lord's love is never like that harbor-it is alwaysat flood-tide. Now, poor weather-beaten vessel, almost ready to go down, steer straight for the harbor mouth between the twored lights! There is water enough for you, though you may be so deeply laden a sinner that you seem to draw a thousand fathoms.The Infinite Love of Jesus Christ is bottomless, so there is room enough in it for you and millions more! Steer for it atonce by simply saying, "I will believe in Jesus. I will take Him to be my Substitute and Repre-sentative-the appointed Manwho died instead of me."
If you come to Him thus, you shall certainly find that He will accept you. Your salvation will not depend upon who or whatyou are, but only upon your Hiding Place. Here is a sinner, almost as big as Giant Goliath, going into this Hiding Place andit completely shields him from the stormy blast! Here is a little tot-is the Hiding Place safe for such a tiny child as heis? Yes, it is quite as safe for him as for the giant if he does but come into it. You who know that you have been big sinners,if you get into this Hiding Place, will be secure! And you who feel yourselves very weak and insignificant- you young childrenwho may be here-if you come to Christ and trust Him, you will be just as safe as the oldest saints-
"Only trust Him, only trust Him,
Only trust Him now!
He will save you, He will save you,
He will save you now!"
That is the way into this Hiding Place-trust in the Lord Jesus Christ! Depend upon Christ for the pardon of your sin and foreverything you need for time and for eternity, and you shall find Him shield you from every storm henceforth and forever!The Lord bless you all, for Jesus Christ's sake! Amen.