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The Sinner Under Conviction.

The Sinner Under Conviction.

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Published by glennpease
BY THE REV. T. T. CASTLEMAN.

And he said unto them, Take me up and cast me forth into the
sea. — Jonah i. 12.
BY THE REV. T. T. CASTLEMAN.

And he said unto them, Take me up and cast me forth into the
sea. — Jonah i. 12.

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Published by: glennpease on Sep 07, 2013
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03/13/2014

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THE SINNER UNDER CONVICTION.BY THE REV. T. T. CASTLEMAN.And he said unto them, Take me up and cast me forth into thesea. — Jonah i. 12.That was a dark and stormy day when the ship masterwent down to wake up Jonah from his sleep. The veryheavens had turned black at his sin./ The waves of thesea rolled in anger until they were grey with foam. AndGod seemed to frown in fury upon the ship, and all thatwas in it. As Jonah came up from his sleeping place, heiaw the whole ship's company assembled together. Theywere about to cast lots to see whether they could not findout the sinner. Jonah went forward, with a heavy heart,to take his part in this trial. But what must have beenhis shame and distress when he found that the lot fell onhim I Jonah was a righteous man. But he had sinned,and God was determined to expose and punish that sin.Learn from this how God hates the sins, even of those wholove him ; and know, certainly, that your sins will be foundout. When Jonah saw that the lot fell on him, he did nottry to hide his sin. He told them who he was, and why he(76)THE SINNER UNDER CONVICTION. 77was there. He said lie was a Hebrew, and " feared theLord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and dry land.". He told them that God had ordered him to go to Nineveh,and warn the people that he was about to destroy the city.But that he was afraid to do it, and was then flying " fromthe presence of the Lord." The sailors were heathen, butthey reproved him for his sin. They said, '' why hast thoudone this ?" But there was no time then for many words.The ship was rolling and creaking in the waves. Nearlyevery thing they had on board was cast into the sea.Yet this did not calm the tempest. Then they turnedto Jonah, and said, " What shall we do unto you to makethe sea calm ?" By this time Jonah felt, in his heart, whata great sinner he was. He saw how fooHsh and wicked itwas to try to hide from God's eye, or escape from God'shand. "Take me up," said he, '^and cast me forth intothe sea ; so shall the sea be calm unto you ; for I know thatfor my sake this great tempest is come upon you." Butthey did not fly upon him and cast him over. They tried
 
again to save the ship. They worked at their oars. Butthe sea fought against them and drove them back. Theycould not come to the land. They cried to God to savethem. But all would not do. At last they took up Jonahand cast him forth into the sea. Then the sea ceased fromits raging. As Jonah went down into the water, the Lordsent a great fish to swallow him. Far down into the deepwaters did this fish carry him. None of us can tell whatwere his feelings there. But certainly he must have feltthat all was lost with him, that he would never again seethe light of the sun. What a time of trouble and sorrow7*T8 SERMON VI.must this have heen to him ! Yet Jonah prayed. Fromthat dark closet of the sea, his heart sent up its cry toheaven, " God be merciful to me a sinner." And there,far down beneath the mountain waves of the sea, Godheard him. And after three days and three nights, God" spake unto the fish, and it vomited Jonah out on the dryland."Come, now, go with me to the sea shore, and let us lookat Jonah there. Let us hear what he has to say about hisfeelings and experience in the storm and in the deep. Hehas known what it is to sin, and what it is to be convincedof sin. He has known what it is to be in great trouble,and what it is to be brought out of that trouble. We maylearn a lesson from his history that will be good for our souls,1. When Jonah was waked up, he saw that he had sinnedagainst Grod.He did not at the first tell this to his companions in trouble.No doubt he thought he would keep it in his own heart aslong as he could ; and he may have said to himself, " Itmay be that the storm will pass away. But as he lookedon the troubled sea, and felt the quivering and reeling of the ship beneath him, and heard the loud and angry voiceof the heavens above, he Jcnew that it was his sm thatbrought all that trouble. When our Saviour was about toleave his disciples in this wicked world, he said to them, I"will send my Holy Spirit, w^io shall convince the world of sin. You have heard a great deal said about convictionof sin. I pray God that he may make you now feel some-
 
thing of it in your hearts. It is no new doctrine. It isas old as sin itself. Our first father, Adam, felt it. So didCain, after he slew his brother ; and all that have everturned from sin to God. Here we learn that Jonah felt itTHE SINNER UNDER CONVICTION. 79before he could be saved. And so must you, and everyother sinner, know what conviction for sin is, before youcan go into heaven. God has been trying in every way toteach it to you. When you begin to learn it, you will feelit in your hearts. You may not talk about it to any one.Like Jonah, you may try to keep it to yourself. Yet,like him, you will feel in your hearts that you have sinnedagainst Grod. The world may look bright to others, but itwill look dark to you. Sometimes you may try to lift upyour heart, and say, " God be merciful to me a sinner."This feeUng in your heart is brought about in a great manydifferent ways. Sometimes by sickness, sometimes by ser-mons, sometimes by the death of friends, sometimes bythinking on your own dangerous state as a sinner. ButGod, by his Holy Spirit, is doing it all. No storm maydrive you on the sea. No winds and waves may come towake you up and show you your sins. But Jesus, who diedfor you ; Jesus, who prays at the right hand of God foryou; Jesus, who watches over you in all your wanderingsfrom him ; this Jesus sends out the Holy Spirit in searchof you. He comes into your very heart. He shows youyour sins. He makes you look at them ; and, as you look,he turns them over and over, and tells you of their guilt.He gives to them a colour and a character you never sawin them before. He holds them up before your eyes, andtells you that God looks at them. He tells you that Godhas written down every wicked word, and thought, andwish, and act of your life. He tells you, too, how pureand good a being God is ; and how he must have hatedyour sins to give his only Son to die, that he might be ableto forgive you. He shows you that God must be angrywith you ; that he must one day punish you. You hear no80 SERMON IV.voice from the clouds, telling you all this ; no lightningflashes conviction into your minds ; no thunder crashes onyour ear, and tells you that you have sinned against God.

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