I have always used notes in my preaching. After hearing some who glory in not using them, who wander all over creation, I decided long ago that a good outline would prevent such meandering. Jonathan Edwards read a sermon that will never be forgotten for its impact. An old Scottish lady who had greatly enjoyed a sermon was reminded that the preacher had read it. She replied that she wouldn’t have cared if he had whistled it!
HE WOULD HAVE PASSED BY
He cometh unto them, walking upon the sea, and would have passed by them.
With the Emmaus disciples, “he made as though he would have gone further.” Here He walks the waves, while the amazed disciples suppose they have seen a spirit. He assures them, “It is I.”
Joseph and Mary supposed He was with them when He was not. Here others supposed He was not with them when He was. Mary in the garden supposed Him to be the gardener. No wonder the old Negro maid said, “I never sposes. Dem sposes will get you into trouble.”
When the storm rages, He is there. But He will pass by if you do not avail yourself of His presence. “He would have passed by them…He made as though he would have gone further.” Call upon Him. “Pass me not, O gentle Saviour: do not pass me by.”
He came to them in their distress, but He did not come into the boat until they called. He did not go into the Emmaus home until they constrained Him. He will not intrude. There is a point beyond which He will not go. If we do not invite Him in, He will go on.