Expect and Attempt
by Rev Greg Obong-Oshotse 22 January 2021
Isaiah 54:2 Enlarge the place of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.”
Before he sailed for India in 1793, William Carey preached a sermon that came to be known as the Deathless sermon, because of its success. It was a passionate plea to his contemporaries for international missionary work. Carey, a Particular Baptist minister, preached the sermon on 30th May 1792 at the Friar Lane Baptist Chapel in Nottingham using Isaiah 54:1-2 as his text. From his outline came his now famous words, "Expect great things from God. Attempt great things for God.” The Baptist Missionary Society was formed as a result of that sermon and Carey became one of its first missionaries. His great work in India earned him his place in history as the ‘father of modern missions.’
Isaiah wrote those words about 700 years before Christ, to speak hope to the Jews who would need such encouragement after many decades of defeat, slavery and exile. Yet Carey walked onto the stage of history nearly 2,500 years later and used those same words to galvanize a nation into action with great results. Great was his expectation. Great was his consecration. Great was the consummation.
We too may take the Lord at His deathless word and inspire one another to attempt bold soul winning ministries and bring lost men and women in our communities to the great Lover of souls. Now is as good as any time to do this.
Dear Father may we expect great things from You, and attempt great things for You in our time in Christ’s name, Amen.
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