Ernest S. Williams on National Radio
Hour, "Sermons in Song"
you had two sons; and one had the habit of saying, "All
right," but never doing what you asked: while the other
son usually would refuse to obey at first but then would
repent and obey. Which son would you appreciate more?
the story of two sons who were just like that. "A certain
man had two sons," He said. "And he came to the first,
and said, Son, go work today in my vineyard. And he answered
and said, I will not; but afterward he repented and went.
And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered
and said, I go, sir, and went not. Whether of them twain
did the will of his father?" (Matthew 21:28-31).
had told this parable and put this question to the people,
they immediately answered, "The first" that is,
the one who said, "I will not," but afterward repented
and went. My friend, have you ever felt the call of God,
bidding you to become a Christian? Or, if you are a Christian,
have you ever felt the call to devote yourself to some
work for the Master?
Do I speak
to some who, like the first son, have said, "I will not,"
when Jesus sought to woo you to himself that you might
become a partaker of His salvation or a worker together
with Him? And are you now a sad, disappointed soul as
a result disillusioned and bearing in your heart
a silent, gnawing regret? If so, this parable should encourage
you, for it shows that still it is not too late. If you
will now do that which your heart said you ought to do,
God will accept you. He will brighten your life, and His
approval will be upon you. Don't go on in disobedience
any longer. "Turn ye, turn ye, for why will ye die?"
Perhaps I speak
to some who readily promised the Lord an obedient life,
but never have kept their promise. Are you like the second
son, who said, "I go, sir," and went not? Perhaps you
said, "Whatever God wants me to do, that I will do," but
instead you have gone on doing whatever has pleased you,
and you have utterly failed to give God an obedient life.
You may even be boasting in your sonship, trying to make
everyone think that all is well with your soul.
Remember: God searches the heart. He knows if it is loyal
and honest, or if it is careless and deceitful. Of this
we must know. "Be sure your sin will find you out."
An old writer
said, "The first law that ever God gave to man was the
law of obedience; it was a commandment pure and simple.
From obedience and submission spring all other virtues,
as all sin does from self-opinion and self-will."
You know, God
is looking for obedience. Too many of us think that lip
service will do. What a world this would be if all who
name the name of Christ lived in obedience to the will
of God. And what assurance it would give when we pass
from this present life into the life eternal.
have been your past, will you not make this the hour of
decision? Will you not, at this moment, ask God for forgiveness,
if you have said, "I go," but have refused to obey? And
if you never yet have said Yes to the will of God, will
you now do so by joining in the old song, "Where He Leads
Me I Will Follow"? Remember "obedience is better
than sacrifice." The Lord has said, "If ye be willing
and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land." God
bless you and help you to give your whole life to Him.
S. Williams served as general superintendent of the Assemblies
of God (1929-49).