I Had Never Truly Rested in Christ’s Work

A person can grow up hearing the gospel a million times and yet never believe in it. They have ears and hear the truth and yet they do not truly hear the truth. This is the testimony of the son of a pastor (Michael Morrow) who was converted after his father died.

Listen to the funeral service of Michael Morrow.

Hear Michael Morrow’s sermons on SermonAudio.

I could start my story in several different places. I could start when I was 8 years old and thought I had become a Christian. I could start when I was in high school or college and had to continuously persuade myself that I was a Christian, but I think the best way to start my story is in a small hospital room in Lexington, Kentucky where we didn’t know if my dad was going to make it or not. Things didn’t look good. He had been sick so much prior to that moment. There were days where we thought that was the end. There were days that we thought he was going to be better and everything would be fine… until he finally passed away. When you stay for a long time in a hospital room and you’re not the one that’s sick, there’s a lot of waiting. There’s a lot of wondering what’s going to happen next. There’s a lot of conversation that happens between you and the people that are with you. One of the topics that came up when I was talking with my mom was about dad’s last sermon. At the time, we didn’t know it was going to be his last sermon, but mom talked about how powerful it was. And she actually even said it was one of the best sermons she’s ever heard. Dad had been sick a lot before that day and I think at the time, he was even having to sit when he was preaching. And he just didn’t have much strength left in him. But the way my mom put it, it was like… it was a miracle just how much power he had when he began to preach. In his voice you can hear strength. You can hear the passion flowing through him. And this was a man who was just weak from sickness and was hours I think from going to the hospital because he was so sick. Dad always uploaded his sermons onto Sermon Audio where people around the world could listen to his sermons and learn from them. And we learned that obviously the last sermon hadn’t been uploaded to Sermon Audio. I was going to do that. I was in the hospital room. I had an Internet connection and everything. I got the file for it. I listened to a couple of seconds of it and realized that the recording was off. There was some kind of setting on the recording that just made it sound kind of strange like there were no breaths in between. And so, I kind of got frustrated with it. Thought about uploading it, then decided no, I’m just going to save it and not worry about it. So, I just put it on my desktop somewhere and didn’t even think about it for several weeks after that. Something that will stick with me forever is seeing how my father handled himself in the hospital in the worst of times. My brother put it best when he was speaking at his funeral. I think he said that dad finished his race sprinting. And there’s no better way to describe that. I remember the nurses were putting in IV’s, central lines, things like that, and dad would barely wince. But one time, he looked up at one of the nurses who was trying to do a procedure that he couldn’t be asleep for, and he just looked at him and said, “You know, I was about your age when God saved me.” And he’s going through this painful, traumatic situation, and one person after another, after another, after another, he’s telling them how God saved him. I had seen my dad witness to people all the time, but not to this ferocity; not to this degree. He knew I needed to hear that too. And he was witnessing to me as much as he was witnessing to those people in the hospital. On April 29th, 2016, my dad passed away. Over the next few days just pounded with grief mixed with conviction, mixed with desperate feeling and need to be saved, a need for redemption, all mixed in together, I was in prayer more then than I think I ever had been previously. Just asking God to show me a way. Show me something. Show me how. I understood what it meant to be saved. I understood what it meant to be a Christian. I understood the “process,” if you will, but I didn’t understand how to get there. I didn’t understand what did it mean to truly have faith. Yeah, I believe in Jesus. I believe in all the things that He’s done. I get it. I don’t understand at what point do I have faith and I’m saved? At what point does that happen to me? When does that transformation happen? I have the belief, right? I’m saved. But I knew I wasn’t, so what was I missing? So what I prayed for, I prayed for an answer. I prayed: God, I need an answer. I need You to show me what am I missing? What am I not seeing that my father saw? That other people I know have seen? They believed. They have faith. They’re confident in their salvation. Where is my confidence? Where is my salvation? My father for his funeral wanted the Gospel to be preached. That’s what he had always said I think to my mom. My brother spoke. Michael Durham spoke. Rob Pelkey spoke. And then Paul Washer spoke. I kind of thought in my head, well, okay, there is this group of men who know God, who are about to preach. As the lineup went, it would be Paul Washer who would simply preach the Gospel to the crowd that was there for dad’s funeral. Many people have been saved under his teaching. This whole funeral – I need to listen up. I need to really pay attention because God, I’m asking You to show me how to have faith. If I don’t get it from this, then I’m not going to get it. The preachers spoke. They sat down, spoke, sat down. Spoke. We dismissed. And the Gospel was preached and it was preached well. What was said needed to be said, but I still didn’t get it. I still didn’t understand what I needed. For the next week, my wife and I stayed at my mom’s house. One afternoon, I was alone in my dad’s office. And I was just going through some of his stuff, some of his pictures from mission trips, his journals. Then I remembered I had the file of that sermon and I thought, well, you know, the recording was kind of messed up. I don’t know what setting it was on. I don’t know why it was messed up. But I never really did listen to the sermon. And mom said it was his greatest. It was his last one. I should just give it a listen and see if it’s worth putting up on Sermon Audio. So I played it. She was right. There were several things in the sermon that jumped out at me immediately. Things I had heard before, but never heard. I heard. My ears heard it, but I didn’t truly hear it until that moment. Michael Morrow: There’s a lot of people that believe Jesus was the Son of God. There are a lot of people who believe that Jesus Christ was born of a virgin. There’s a lot of people who believe that Jesus came into the world to save sinners who have never personally trusted Him as their Savior. Jason: And then, the one thing he said that really just tipped me over the edge that was exactly what I needed to hear to finally realize what I needed for my salvation. Michael Morrow: There is a time when your heart quits trying to get to God and rests on the finished work of Jesus Christ. Jason: I had never rested. I had never just given myself to Him, never given my full trust. That’s what trust is. It’s resting in His finished work. And I prayed. I said, “Jesus, I rest in You. I rest in Your finished work in dying on the cross for my sins, in raising from the dead. I rest in that. You have given me life.” What’s crazy is I’ve heard this a million times. Dad has preached this a million times. I’ve heard people’s testimonies a million times that it’s not anything that I do. I know it’s not a prayer that I pray. I know that it’s not anything that I can do. That Christ does it for me. Resting is letting Christ take over, letting Him take control. Because if you’re trying to control it, you’re not resting. And that is the moment when my heart changed. I’m thankful that God used my dad to preach to me. Not only did he preach to me in the hospital room; not only did he preach to me throughout my whole life, but he preached to me in his final sermon maybe before he even knew I would ever hear it. And God used that to help open my eyes to what I needed. Michael Morrow: I’ll tell you what the blessing of God is: being in the will of God walking with Him, hearing His voice, staying in fellowship with Him, knowing His Word, loving Him, seeing miracles wrought because He’s doing it through your life and in your life for His own glory, where only He can get glory out of your life. That is the life of faith. And it might mean that you don’t have anything. Guys, this world is not what it’s about. This is not where your fulfillment is. Here we live by faith, not by sight. Then, we’ll see Him as He is and we’ll be like Him. And then it will be by sight.

How Important is Having a Testimony of Salvation?

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When talking with other Christians, a common question that we may ask is what is someone’s testimony. How much weight should we give to someone’s testimony? What if someone doesn’t even have a testimony of how and when the Lord has saved them?

Fig Leaves: Hiding Our Nakedness

One of the results of the fall of Adam and Eve is that now all of us feel ashamed to be naked. No matter where you go in this world, everyone knows the shame of being naked and the need to cover themselves. And in a spiritual sense, we all are trying to cover ourselves before God. But our coverings won’t cover us, only what God provides can cover us.

Is the Regulative Principle Biblical?

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Is the regulative principle Biblical when it comes to worship in the corporate church gathering? Many people dogmatically assert this teaching, but what exactly does this mean? And most important, is it clearly found in the Bible?

God’s Sovereignty and Our Prayers

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A concept that some people have difficulty with is trying to reconcile the sovereignty of God with our prayers. Does God’s sovereignty make our prayers unnecessary or irrelevant?

God is Gracious But Sin Has Terrible Consequences

Praise be to God that He forgives our sins and that we won’t have to go to hell for them. But this doesn’t mean that there will not be fierce and severe consequences for our sin. God’s forgiveness doesn’t in any way nullify His discipline.

This is an excerpt from the sermon, “Secret Sins“.

The Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil

An essential event in the Genesis creation account is the fall of man and the bringing in of sin and death to this world. We see the devil deceiving Adam and Eve to eat fruit that God had forbidden. We see the lie that he used and we can also see that he uses this exact same lie today.

God Justly Punishes People We Know and Love

Believer, do you realize that hell is for a bunch of people you know and love who are outside of Christ? After a funeral of an unbeliever are you faithful to give your children an honest and Biblical answer of where that person is at? It is a blessing for a person to have a fear of God, that they might flee from the wrath of God and come to Christ.

The excerpt is taken from the full sermon: Asking God to Destroy Our Enemies
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How Should We Interpret the Creation Account?

The Bible’s account of creation doesn’t fit with what many modern scientists are claiming. In order to reconcile this, many professing Bible-believers are coming up with theories on how to interpret the creation account in a way that fits with what modern scientists are saying.

Is The Lord Calling Me to Foreign Missions?

The following comprises the substance of Dr. Judson’s address to the Society for Missionary Inquiry, in Brown University, during his visit back to America (1845) after decades of being overseas as a missionary.

Only One Right Path For Every Believer

My dear young Brethren: There is one, and only one, right path for every man, — for each one of you to follow, in order to ensure the full approbation of God, and the greatest success in your efforts to do good and glorify Him. Seek that one path. There may, indeed, be some other path, not very far from the right one, in which you can accomplish something for the cause of truth; but nowhere can you do so much as in that one. Do not, my brethren, content yourself; with anything short of finding that one path marked out for you by the will of Heaven; and when you have found it, walk in it, straight forward, and let nothing turn you aside.

How to Find That Path?

But to find that path: that is the question, and one not to be settled without diligent inquiry. To determine this point in your own case, in the first place, try all your schemes by the unerring word of God. Reject, at once, whatever has not a firm basis there. Let this blessed Word be to you the golden lamp of heaven, hung out to guide you into and along the pathway of duty, and do not for a moment turn your backs upon this glorious light, to follow the feeble tapers of your own lighting. But you are not to suppose that this of itself, independent of all other considerations, will decide you to your particular sphere of labor. Next, then, look for the developments of God’s providence in your own characters, and in the circumstances in which you are placed. Watch for the expressed of His will in the opinions and advice of your most pious and judicious brethren respecting you, and by all means humbly and earnestly pray for guidance from above.

Having an Abiding Conviction of Duty

Finally, seek for a deep and abiding conviction of duty. Do not act from the impulse of mere feeling. There is great danger here. Feelings often mislead us. Good men sometimes mistake transient impressions, or the whisperings of their own vain imaginations, for a sense of duty, and follow some satanic influence, instead of the Spirit of truth. You must be very cautious here. I well recollect when I and other young men stood before the association in Bradford, to petition that body for aid in prosecuting our missionary scheme. An inquiry was made respecting the motives which prompted us to engage in this work. Samuel J. Mills replied, with great emphasis, “I feel myself impelled to go — yea, woe is me if I preach not the gospel to the heathen.” It is this settled conviction of duty to Christ, a feeling that necessity is laid upon him, and this only, that will sustain a man under the severe trials and labors of the missionary life. Without this, he will soon be discouraged, and faint by the way. But with the assurance that having humbly submitted himself to the divine teaching, he has the approval of Christ, he is prepared for any event. With this he can labor; by this, he can die. If brought into difficulties, from which there seems no escape, he feels that he has gone thus far in obedience to his Lord’s command; that he is doing his Master’s work; and that, whatever befalls him, all is well: it is the will of Christ.

If you can have this unwavering conviction, my dear brethren, that God requires you to go as missionaries to the heathen, go. But do not go without it. It is indispensable to your success. I have known more than one missionary break down for want of this assurance.

If it be the will of God, may many of you go, constrained by the love of Christ, and lead many more to love Him; and when our work is done on earth, may we all be raised to heaven, where we shall know more of His love to us, and love Him more.

From: Pulling the Eye Tooth from a Live Tiger: A Memoir of the LIfe and Labors of Adoniram Judson Volume 2 by Francis Wayland, pg 227-228

The Purpose of Creation

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Much of modern science has come to the conclusion that all of God’s creation happened by random chance and mere coincidence. But God’s Word plainly teaches that He had a purpose in everything He created. What is the purpose of creation?

Are You Defensive?

We all have blind spots that need to be identified and point out. One of the main ways God points out our blind spots is through other Christians approaching us about them. When you get approached or corrected about something in your life, how do you receive it? Are you defensive?

Hear the full sermon here.