"Honour All Men"

I had to address a number of men who were by no means attractive in appearance, indeed some of them were the very dregs. As I looked into their faces the Word of God spoke to me and it changed, in my view, every one of them. The words, "Honour all men," forced their way into my very soul, and I was both rebuked and encouraged. To me they did not look honourable; but who was I to decide that, when the Word of God commanded me to honour all men? They were men, no matter how hardened and debased, so I spoke to them, taking those three words as my text. I told them that the Word of God commanded me to honour them, and there were three great reasons why I should do so.

1. God had sent a message to them and it was a message of Love. Yes, He commanded them to repent, but it was His goodness that did this — His message to them was a message of love, and an invitation to them to dwell with Him for ever. I told them that if his Majesty the King were to send a kindly message to my next door neighbour, inviting him to be his guest, I should certainly respect my neighbour, and surely much more should I honour them, as God not only sent His kindly message to them, but had made me the bearer of it.

2. I must honour them because every man of them had an immortal soul, some of them had for forgotten it, and had lived more like beasts than men; they had neglected and starved their souls, but they had not killed them; they could not do that, even death itself could not do that, they would live on for ever and ever, either in the glory of God's house or in the depths of hell.

3. I must honour them, because of what they might become. If they turned to God, believing His message, and yielded themselves to the Lord Jesus as their Saviour, they would become the children of God, for to as many as receive Him, to them He gives the power to become the children of God, even to as many as believe in His Name; and if children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ.

It was a new view of men that those words gave me, and I pass them on and press them upon others. We are praying for a revival of the work of God, we are longing for it, and looking for it, and if we look upon men, not as rich or poor, attractive or repellent, but as material for the grace of God, as souls to be saved or perish; it will help to prepare our hearts for the work of God, and contribute towards our fitness as vessels for the Master's use in this great service of turning men from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God.