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(Acts Ch. 3)
Vs. 1. Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. If Peter and John, Jesus, disciples, needed to pray, don't you think we all need more to pray? Prayer increases our faith. So we need to pray everyday like the disciples. If a man cannot afford to pray he will not generate faith.
Vs. 2. And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple." There was a lame man at the Beautiful gate. Could he walk? He was born lame. His five senses, however, were all functioning. He could eat, see, hear, speak. His hands could move, but not his legs. Neither can a man that has no faith walk. Many Church members can eat but cannot walk, like this lame man. How pitiful if we are lame to run the heavenly race. If pastors and evangelists have no faith, they are also like this lame man. Members without faith are eaters and not walkers. Merchants who come to Church without faith are also eaters and not walkers, like this lame man. They are carried about by pastors and evangelists. And the more they are carried about, the more burdensome they become, as they increase in fatness with their wealth. Ah! when one becomes an elder one is well-satisfied. There is no more need of faith. O God, help me get rich!"
The Church in China to this day cannot support herself. She is dead. How is this? Because her members are lame, without faith. Pastors and evangelists carry the members up to the door, but not into the Church. Ah! Members, without faith, cannot walk. Neither have the evangelists strength to carry them in. Without the new birth and salvation, how pitiful!
Vs. 3. Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms." What did the lame man see? They saw the disciples and asked for money. He looked to man and money, not to Jesus. Daily he asked for man's alms. Many Church-members today cringe before the rich and the capitalist. They trust man and money, but not God. No faith, no strength. The Church, not trusting in Jesus becomes a dead church. So we must trust Jesus, not looking to man or circumstances. Only by looking to Jesus can a Church stand. If we believe in Jesus, then we are doing the work of the Lord. We can triumph over all. When I went to Honan I saw the Church relying on foreign funds. When the foreign funds stopped to come, and there was no more money left, the Church and the Hospital closed shop. Serious indeed! It never works to trust in man and money.
Vs. 4-6. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us.... Peter said, Do you want money? We havent got a cent. But we have Jesus. In the name of Jesus I tell you to get up and walk." Ah! Many have money but not faith. When we have no money, then we have faith! Many there are who look to the Taifu (doctor) when they can, and to Je-su when they cant." You have seen what happened today (Dr. Sung's healing session at the Gospel Hall). Did you believe? If you believe you can do all things. To go forward, the Church must go on by faith. The world cannot be trusted, nor money. Only Jesus is trustworthy. May we all have faith.
Vs. 7-10. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength..." Peter told him to walk and he walked. He didn't delay a second. Neither did he beg now. He witnessed He saved many people. May everyone here tonight have faith and be healed. Jesus says, He that believeth on me shall do greater works. When I first prayed for some lepers, my heart was very afraid. Afterwards I prayed very earnestly, by faith, confessing my sins to God. Then the lepers were healed.
In the course of my preaching I developed a quick-beating heart. Someone said to me, If you don't get cured, you will not only keep on palpitating, but also develop an enlarged heart. Your life is in danger." Thus I declined further invitations to preach. But God said to me, You fear death, you will surely die. I felt ashamed. My faith was small.
I drummed up courage to go to Tungchow to speak. When eight hundred came, I was no more afraid. My heart stopped palpitating. I spoke on courageously. I sweated profusely. Wonder of wonders, my sickness got cured. Who dares to die will not die. So by faith we can conquer Satan and worry.
My second child died recently. After three days God told me to go to the villages to preach. I got some funds and immediately struck out to Huchow. God said to me, I'll open to you a door to preach throughout China. When I got to Huchow a foreign missionary asked what I was doing. I said, I have come to preach. When I gave my testimony, fifty people were moved by the Holy spirit.
God then sent me to Nanking and Peiping. He also sent me to Manchuria. Although the climate there is cold I did not shrink. From there I returned to Shanghai. When I prepared to go back to Hinghwa, a telegram inviting me to preach came from Nanchang. At Nanchang I brought 700 - 800 people to Christ. From Nanchang I moved on to Kiukiang.
Though I am poor the Lord has led my footsteps all over China. I know the Lord has called me. I am no more afraid. I can do all things. Trusting God, I can triumph over poverty. All my clothes are the Lord's provision. So, don't you think it strange: Having God's Word, you eat God's rice. Trusting God, you need fear nothing.
A rich man wanted to give me a house. God told me not to take it, so I did not, I'd rather rent one, for I lack nothing. I can triumph not only over poverty but also over difficulties. On my trip this time there was a man who held a knife to kill me. Trusting in God, I wasn't afraid. When I preached on the Cross this man wept, repented and confessed his sins.
There are three girl students who went to an island to preach. In three months they won 30 to Christ. They went on their own but God supplied their needs. How about us? Should we not do our best to preach the Word? There's the great Church of Christ. Beloved brothers and sisters, by faith we can triumph over pain, anxiety, poverty, difficulties. Young students, if you meet with sickness, worry, difficulties, poverty, you must pray and conquer by faith. Many of you orphans and widows, be you also built up in the faith. Trusting Jesus you can triumph over all. This afternoon you've seen God's glory. So let us henceforth be established in faith. Trusting Jestis, trusting God, we are more than conquerors in everything.
Faith is the victory!
Faith is the victory!
Oh, glorious victory,
That overcomes the world.