A Startling Cure

A Canadian soldier arrived at the Ilford Emergency Hospital from France on May 3rd. Shock had deprived him of sight, but as the disturbance of the part affected was not organic, there was hope that treatment would be successful.

After a lengthened stay in the hospital, and no recovery being observed, the soldier was allowed to leave and return to his Canadian home.

Early in September he embarked on the liner “Hesperian,” which, as our readers doubtless know, was torpedoed off the South of Ireland by a German submarine.

The shock of being suddenly flung into the water in his blind condition, and of being faced by the prospect of a watery grave, so affected him that his sight was restored. We read:

“The man was so astonished and overjoyed that, while still in the water, he kept shouting out to those near him that he had regained his sight.”

It was without doubt a remarkable cure, and it was caused by shock.

But there is another kind of blindness that is very general indeed, and much more serious than that of the Canadian soldier. We fear the majority of our readers are affected by it, and, alas! many are not aware of it.

The Canadian soldier was blind and knew it. Moreover, he was most anxious that he should recover his sight, and in bidding farewell to the Chairman of the Ilford Hospital he said:

“Perhaps a German submarine may torpedo the ship I am going back on, and the shock may restore my sight. The Germans robbed me of my sight. Perhaps they will give it me back again.”

How different is it with men and women all around—blind, and not knowing it; blind, and not anxious to have their sight restored. We read in the old Book, “The god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (2 Cor. 4:4).

Satan blinds the mind, the eye of the heart, and men and women, alas! love to have it so.

How often God opens the eye of the mind by a shock. The writer of 2 Corinthians 4:4, the verse just quoted, was one such. Blind he was, and infatuated with his own self-righteousness. Little did Saul of Tarsus guess at the truth that he was “the chief of sinners,” yet a shock gave him spiritual eyesight, and afterwards he could write, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief” (1 Tim. 1:15).

He was pressing on to Damascus, bent on persecuting the Christians, when the shock happened.

It was mid-day, the eastern sun was shining in all its meridian splendour. Suddenly a light brighter than the mid-day sun shone upon him, and a voice was heard from heaven, saying, “Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me? It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks” (Acts 26:14). From that hour Saul was a converted man, and laboured to spread the doctrine he had sought in his blindness to destroy. Happy, blessed shock that affected him so wondrously for time and eternity!

It was midnight. The jailer was asleep on his bed. His prisoners—Paul and Silas—for no other offence than preaching the Gospel, were in the inner dungeon, their feet fast in the stocks, their backs bleeding with stripes given them by command of the magistrates, yet praying and praising God.

“Suddenly there was a great earthquake” (Acts 16:26). God had intervened on behalf of his servants. Aye, and better still, the shock awakened the jailer in two ways. First, from his bodily sleep; second, praise God, from his soul-slumber. The shock opened his eyes, and he asked that question of all questions, “What must I do to be saved?” and received the memorable answer, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house” (v. 31).

Reader, let me ask you most earnestly, Have your eyes been opened yet to realise that as a sinner you are going straight to a terrible doom? Death and judgment, the great white throne and the lake of fire, lie before each unsaved man and woman. May God wake you up.

How many have had spiritual sight given them by a shock. Martin Luther got his eyes opened when a thunderbolt, in the forest, struck dead his companion by his side. Lieutenant Blackmore, R.N., received spiritual sight through being blown up in a powder explosion on board one of H.M. ships years ago: He testified that he went up unconverted and came down converted to God.

Very similar was the case of the writer who said:

“’Twixt the saddle and the ground,
I mercy sought and mercy found.”

Do you believe that you may be saved as quickly as that? You may. Just as you are, and just where you are, God is ready to bless and save you.

Repent and believe. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:31).

Gospel Tidings Annual 1915, p. 125