Sermon Illustrations

Nicky Gumble Why and How should I read the Bible:

“Sometimes God speaks to us in a very specific way. God spoke to me very clearly about my father after he died on January 21, 1981. I had become a Christian seven years earlier and my parents’ initial reaction was one of complete horror. Gradually, over the years, they began to see a change in me. My mother became a committed Christian long before she died. My father was a man of few words. Initially, he was very unsure about my involvement in the Christian faith. By degrees, he started to become warmer about it. His death was quite sudden. What I found hardest about his death was that I wasn’t sure whether he was a Christian or not.

Exactly ten days after his death, I was reading the Bible. I had asked God to speak to me about my father that day because I was still worrying about him. I happened to be reading Romans and I came across the verse, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved" (Romans 10:13), I sensed at that moment God was saying to me that this verse was for my father; that he had called on the name of the Lord and been saved. About five minutes later my wife, Pippa, came in and said to me, "1 have been reading a verse in Acts 2:21 and I think this verse is for your father, It says, ’And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."’ It was quite extraordinary, because that verse only appears twice in the New Testament and God had spoken to both of us through the same words at the same time in different parts of the Bible.

Three days later, we went to a Bible study in a friend’s home and the Bible study was on Romans 10:13, that same passage. So three times during those three days God spoke to me about my father through the same words. Nevertheless, on my way to work I was still thinking about my father and worrying about him. As I came out of the subway, I looked up and there was a huge poster saying, "Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved" (Romans 10:13), I remember talking to a friend about what had happened and he said, "Do you think the Lord may be trying to speak to you?"

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