The Safe Venture
‘Bid me come unto Thee. . . . And He said, Come.’—Matt. xiv. 28, 29.
IF Jesus says, ‘Come!’ don’t you think you may venture? Perhaps it is night in your soul,1—as dark as ever it can be. It would not be so bad if you could even distinctly see the waves of the troubled sea2 on which you are tossing. You do not know where you are. All seems vague and uncertain and wretched and confused.3 And though the Lord Jesus is very near you, though He has come to you walking on the water, and has said, ‘It is I, be not afraid,’* you cannot see Him, and you are not at all sure it is His voice;5 or if it is, that He is speaking to you. So of course you are ‘troubled.’6
1 Ps. evil. 14. a Job. xvi. 16. 3 Jer. xvii. 9.
4 Matt. xiv. 25. 5 Matt. xiv. 27. 6 Matt. xiv. 26.
And if, in this trouble, you go on trying to steer and row for yourself, these same waves will prove themselves to be awful realities, and you will be lost in the storm. Do not venture that; but venture out through the darkness and upon the waves at the bare word of Jesus.
You do not need even to say, ‘Lord, bid me come to Thee!’ for He has done that already. Jesus has bid you ‘ Come !” and the bidding would be no more real if He opened the heavens, and said it again to you from the right hand of the throne of God. So the only question is, Will you venture?
True, it is but a word, but think Whose word I3 Could the word that Jesus Christ Himself uttered be a vain deceit ?* Is not the Person the guarantee of the word?* ‘The word only,’6 of the Son of God has proved enough for every one of the great multitude that no man could number,6 and it will be enough for you.
It does not matter in the least that you cannot see, and that you cannot feel, and that you cannot hear or distinguish anything else at all.7 It does not matter in the least that you feel miserable and confused, and that you don’t know what will come next.8 It does not matter in the least that you cannot exactly understand how this simple coming can result in calm, and peace, and safety, and finding yourself at the land.9 It does not matter in the least that the waters are casting up all the mire and dirt10 of all the sinfulness of heart and life, the ‘old
1 Matt. xi. 28. 2 Matt. xxiv. 35. 3 John xii. 48.
4 Num. xxiii. 19. 5 Matt. viii. 8. 6 Rev. vii. 9.
7 Isa. 1. 10. 8 Isa. ix. 5 ; 2 Chron. xx. 12.
9 John vi. 21. 10 Isa. Ivii. 20.
It does not matter in the least that the waters are casting up all the mire and dirt10 of all the sinfulness of heart and life, the ‘old sins,’1 and the besetting sins.3 It does not matter in the least that all the winds of doubt seem let loose upon you, boisterous and blowing from every point to which you turn.3 All this, and everything else that is ‘contrary,’* is only so much the more reason for the simple venture. Just only you ‘come!’ And even if in the very act of coming you are afraid,5 and think you are beginning to sink, come on with the cry, ‘Lord, save me ! ‘• and immediately Jesus will save you, and with the strong grasp of His hand the unanswerable question will come, ‘Wherefore didst thou doubt?” You need not say, ‘If I perish, I perish,’8 for you will not perish, and cannot perish, in this blessed venture of your soul upon His word.* He ‘will cause you to know His hand and His might ;’10 ‘He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love,'” and you shall rest in His love, now and for ever.
‘They shall know in that day that I am He that doth speak; behold, it is I.’
‘ They shall know in that day that I am He that doth speak; behold, it is I.’^*
Come, ye weary, heavy laden,
Lost and ruined by the fall; If you tarry till you’re better,
You will never come at all. Not the righteous,
Sinners Jesus came to call. Lo ! the incarnate God, ascended, Pleads the merit of His blood; Venture on Him, venture wholly,
Let no other trust intrude. None but Jesus
Can do helpless sinners good. Joseph Hart.
1 2 Pet. i. 9. 2 Heb. xii. i. 82 Tim. ii. 13.
4 Matt. xiv. 24. 5 Mark v. 33. 6 Matt. xiv. 30.
7 Matt. xiv. 31. 8 Esth. iv. 16. 9 John x, 27, 28.
lOJer. xvi. 21. H Zeph. iii. 17. ^Isa. Hi. 6.