NONE CAST OUT
"This is the resting place, let the weary rest; and this
is the place of repose"—
"Whoever comes to me I will never drive away." John 6:37
An invitation to every burdened Israelite—every way-worn
pilgrim of the wilderness, to come for shelter under the branches of the
How these and such like gracious words which proceeded
out of the mouth of Jesus, must have told on the wondering multitudes He
addressed, those who never heard kind sayings before—who were led to imagine
that it was learned scribes, or devout Pharisees, or austere Sadducees, or
elaborate-robed priests, who alone had any hope of salvation! Can we marvel
that "the common people heard Him gladly," when He lifted them up from the
dust of degradation; when He proclaimed boldly—"I came not to call the
righteous, but sinners to repentance." I came not to call you rich—you
learned—you who pride yourselves on your religious formalism and
self-righteous austerities—but you broken-hearted penitents, weeping
prodigals, despairing Magdalenes—you the most erring wanderers from
the fold, who are really and earnestly seeking to return. "If ANY man
thirsts, let him come unto Me and drink." "If ANY man enter in he shall be
saved, and shall go in and out and find pasture."
Reader! say not, 'This invitation cannot be for me. I
cannot take my place under the gracious palm-shade, just as I am, with the
memory of countless transgressions.' Yes! it is just because you are
wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked, that He invites you
to come. Come, just as you are. Christ does not require any previous
qualifications. It is because you are weary He asks you to
partake of the shelter. It is because of your poverty that He so
importunately exclaims—"Behold, I have set before you an open door."
When, in a season of scarcity and poverty, thousands
thrown out of employment are forced to avail themselves of bread doled out
to stop the rage of hunger, they are not heard to say, 'We must have proper
clothing first. We must first cover these children's bleeding,
frost-bitten feet, before we can venture to appear before the distributors
of a city's or a nation's bounty.' No; if they did so, it would invalidate
their plea—it would send them home again to a cupboard, and hearth, and
wardrobe, as empty as they left it. It is because they appear in
tattered rags, and because hunger has written its appeal on their
emaciated faces and in the hollow eyes of the hapless children at their
side, that the door opens for relief.
There is no desert wanderer, haggard and footsore, who
may not come to that grove of "exceeding great and precious promises." God
has made provision not for the strong only, but for the weak, the tempted,
the sorrowful, the suffering. The feeblest bird may make a perch of these
branches. The anointing oil of blessing poured on the head of the true
Aaron, flows down to the very skirts of His garments, so that the
least and lowliest are made partakers of His covenant grace.
It is well for us, however, to remember that there is but
one Redeemer; and "neither is there salvation in any other." A few days
previous to the Elim encampment, there was but one way for the Hebrew host
through the Red Sea from the pursuing hosts of Pharaoh. There was but one
way for evading the destroying angel—by the sprinkling of blood on the
doorposts of their dwellings. There was but one way, in a subsequent age,
for Rahab escaping the general destruction of Jericho—by hanging out from
her window the scarlet thread. There was but one way—by washing in the river
of Jordan—that the proud Syrian captain of a yet later day, could have his
The Hebrews, on that memorable night of the death of the
firstborn, might have built up Egyptian pyramid on pyramid to keep out the
messenger of wrath. It would have been of no avail. Or the army of a
million, passing through the sea, might have piled its coral rocks to make
an avenue through the waters. The wild waves would have laughed them to
scorn and made them the plaything of its tide! Naaman might have made a
toilsome pilgrimage to every river of Asia—from Abana and Pharpar, to the
Euphrates and the Indus—but all would have been to no purpose. Nothing but
'the waters of Israel' would prove efficacious in curing his malady.
Let us make sure of a personal interest in the one
great Salvation. That Almighty Redeemer remains, to this hour,
immutable—all-sufficient—faithful among the faithless—changeless among the
changeable. Bernard beautifully sang in the words of his familiar hymn—
"Jesus, Thou joy of loving hearts!
Thou Fount of life, Thou Light of men!
From the best bliss that earth imparts,
We turn unfilled to Thee again."
Yes! you who are weary, sick at heart it may be of the
world which has deceived you—bubble after bubble bursting in your hands;
that gracious Savior, with outstretched arms, is waiting to welcome you
back. With the hoarded love of eternity in His heart, He is ever
repeating the "faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance" which heads
this meditation—"whoever comes to me I will never drive away!"
"With a heart full of anxious request,
Which my Father in heaven bestowed,
I wandered, alone and distressed,
In search of a quiet abode.
Astray and distracted, I cried
Lord, where would You have me to be?
And the voice of the Lamb that had died
Said, 'Come, My beloved, to ME!'
"I went—for He mightily wins
Weary souls to His peaceful retreat,
And He gave me forgiveness of sins,
And songs that I love to repeat;
Made pure by the blood that He shed,
My heart in His presence was free,
I was hungry and thirsty—He fed;
I was sick, and He comforted me.
"He gave me the blessing complete,
The hope that is with me today;
And a quiet abode at His feet,
That shall not be taken away."
"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?"