I have come across another old book of sermons by James S. Stewart, the prominent Scottish preacher of the mid-20th century. I have previously posted quotes from his book on missions (first post; second post; third post).
This book, The Strong Name, was published in 1941 so I imagine the sermons were originally preached in the early days of WW II. This seems to be the point in the opening of his sermon “The Romance of Orthodoxy.” Preaching from 2 Kings 7:9 he rebukes the idea which was apparently (and understandably) current then that “these are bad days and not time for the announcing of good news.” Stewart rebukes such an idea for the church by pointing to the Gospel. No matter our situation we have been loved and redeemed by God! Stewart closes the sermon with the following words which are a good exhortation to us in any day. Perhaps it is especially good as we approach Sunday and many of us will be preaching. Proclaim the Gospel, brothers!
If the Church were witnessing with all her might, and in all her members, to the things which she most surely believes and by which she lives, how incalculable might be her achievement in this perplexed, distracted generation! If we, the children of Zion whose captivity God has ended, had our mouths filled with singing for the gladness of that great deliverance, what threatening shadows might be scattered, what dark and dreary places flooded with the blessed light of hope! If every professing Christian were a veritable ambassador of Christ, how the royal banners of His Kingdom would go from strength to strength, conquering and to conquer! This is a day of good tidings. One thing is needful. The world cries for it. Honour claims it. Christ commands it. Send the good tidings on!
i had the unique blessing of sitting under Dr. Stewart’s teaching and preaching for two years back in the 60′. Between him and Dr. Tom Torrance, i was given exposure to the best of theology and Biblical teaching/preaching that any young man could experience. i shall never forget when Dr. Stewart was teaching at New College in 1963 on the ‘Cross and the Death of our Lord’. During the lecture he stopped and had to gather his thoughts as tears ran down his cheeks. Oh, that there were great men of God today who had the head/heart anointing of that man. Dr. George Callahan