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Unanswerable Argument
A. B. Earle
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TOPIC and SUBTOPIC: Concern For A Soul, More Persuasive Than All Arguments.

TITLE: Unanswerable Argument

The most effectual, unanswerable argument with which to meet infidelity is intense desire for mens salvation, or, as Paul expresses it, I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart. For I could wish myself accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh.

Infidelity stands trembling in the presence of soul-travail. It is an unanswerable argument.

An incident occurred a number of years ago that illustrates the real power of this argument. A man of great ability and reading supposed himself invulnerable to any argument Christians could bring in favor of Christianity. Able ministers had endeavored to convince him, but he would laugh them down. A very able, pious lawyer had been sent to reason with him, but it was all of no avail, until a humble Christian satisfied him he was greatly concerned for his salvation.

I will give his experience in his own language, as related by himself in a prayer-meeting:

"I stand," said Mr. R, "to tell you the story of my conversion." His lips trembled slightly as he spoke, and his bosom heaved with suppressed emotion.

"I am as a brand plucked out of the burning. The change in me is an astonishment to myself, and all brought about by the grace of God and that unanswerable argument. It was a cold morning in January, and I had just begun my labor at the anvil in my shop, when I looked out, and saw Mr. B approaching. He dismounted quickly, and entered.

"As he drew near, I saw he was agitated. His look was full of earnestness. His eyes were bedimmed with tears. He took me by the hand. His breast heaved with emotion, and with indescribable tenderness he said: Mr. R, I am greatly concerned for your salvation, greatly concerned for your salvation," and he burst into tears.

"He stood with my hand grasped in his. He struggled to regain self possession. He often tried to speak, but not a word could he utter, and finding that he could say no more, he turned, went out of the shop, got on his horse, and rode slowly away."

"Greatly concerned for my salvation!" said I, audibly, and I stood, and forgot to bring my hammer down. There I stood with it upraised greatly concerned for my salvation!

"I went to my house. My poor, pious wife, whom I had always ridiculed for her religion, exclaimed: 'Why, Mr. R, what is the matter with you?' "

"Matter enough," said I, filled with agony, and overwhelmed with a sense of sin. "Old Mr. B has ridden two miles this cold morning to tell me he was greatly concerned for my salvation. What shall I do? What shall I do?"

"I do not know what you can do," said my astonished wife. "I do not know what better you can do than to get on your horse, and go and see him. He can give you better counsel than I, and tell you what you must do to be saved."

"I mounted my horse, and pursued after him. I found him alone in that same little room where he had spent the night in prayer for my poor soul, where he had shed many tears over such a reprobate as I, and had besought God to have mercy upon me.

"I am come," said I to him, "to tell you that I am greatly concerned for my own salvation."

"Praised be God!" said the aged man. "It is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners, even the chief," and he began at that same Scripture, and preached to me Jesus.

"On that same floor we knelt, and together we prayed, and we did not separate that day till God spoke peace to my soul. I have often been requested to look at the evidence of the truth of religion, but, blessed be God, I have evidence for its truth here," laying his hand upon his heart, "which nothing can gainsay or resist. I have often been led to look at this and that argument for the truth of Christianity; but I could overturn, and, as I thought, completely demolish and annihilate them all."

"But I stand here, tonight, thankful to acknowledge that God sent an argument to my conscience and heart which could not be answered or resisted, when a weeping Christian came to tell me how greatly concerned he was for my salvation. God taught him that argument when he spent the night before him in prayer for my soul."

If we would lead men to the Saviour, let us satisfy them that we see and feel their danger; that alone before God, we are greatly concerned for their salvation.

A. B. Earle, From: Incidents Used In His Meetings, published in 1888.

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