Author: the late William Henry Graham BA
The Way Back
Some years ago, an article for TRUTH IN LOVE was requested of my father Will Graham. In one of his notebooks, I found an article thought to be the one he intended for publication. It is here published as it was found, still in the final stages of preparation. In my father's last conversation with me, he charged me to preach all and only the truth of the scriptures. In these two instalments of his article, he tells us something of what that meant to him —RON GRAHAM SEPTEMBER, 1966.
THE WAY BACK (1) — By the late Will Graham
In the Bible, we read of "the Way," but in common speech it may be called, "the Way back." for the Bible Way is the Way back to God. We read in the writings of Paul the apostle:
"We have proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; as it is written. There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one" (Romans 3:9-18)
Further along (verse 17) it says, "Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace they have not known: there is no fear of God before their eyes"
Now this applies to the world of today. Yet people in this world will not admit their sinfulness; they are self‑righteous, thinking they are good enough to get into heaven.
Adam and Eve
In Genesis, the first book of Holy Scripture, we find that Adam and Eve, the first parents of mankind, disobeyed the commandment of God their Creator, failed to stand the test, and were tempted to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, which sin brought eternal death.
This punishment everlasting Paul describes in Romans 2:6-9. "(God) will render to every man according to his deeds: unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil..."
Because of their sin (sin is disobedience, the transgression of God's law (Romans 5: 18-20). Adam and Eve were sent from Eden which then was guarded by angels and the flaming sword turning every way, to keep the way of the tree of life (Genesis 3: 23-24).
Man has lost the way back to God and Eden ever since. In Isaiah 53, we read, "All we like sheep have gone astray. We have turned every one to his own way" (Isaiah 53:6).
The Way of Salvation
Jesus said, "Wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth unto destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" (Matthew 7:13-14).
Isaiah of old spoke of the way back to God: "And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it; when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left" (Isaiah 30:21).
In Isaiah 35 is this prophecy: "And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called the Way of Holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for the redeemed: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein. No lion shall be there nor any ravenous beast shall go up thereon; they shall not be found there; but the redeemed shall walk there: and the ransomed of Jehovah shall return, and come with singing unto Zion" (Isaiah 35:8-9)
The Way was spoken of by Paul, in Acts 22:4, when he said, "I persecuted this Way unto death." Also, in Acts 24:14, Paul is recorded as saying, "After the Way which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers."
When Paul and Silas preached the gospel in Philippi, Macedonia, a demon-possessed girl followed them saying, "These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation" (Acts 16:17).
The blessed Lord Jesus, who came into this world over nineteen hundred years ago, is the Way of Salvation and Holiness manifested to us as a man in whom was God. "God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself" (2 Corinthians 5:19). Reader, will you, through Him, be reconciled to God?
Jesus is the Way
Jesus said to His disciples in the night when He was betrayed, "I go to prepare a place for you... I will come again and receive you unto myself; that where I am there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know and the Way ye know." At that time Thomas said, "How can we know the way?" Then Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man cometh unto the father but by me" (John 14:1-6) No mere man could speak thus.
Christ died on Calvary's cross to redeem us by His precious blood. He suffered death, lay in the grave for us sinful humans, and rose from the dead to ascend to God to reign. He was "crowned with glory and honour" (Hebrews 2:9).
Will you who read this, hear this gospel, and believing it repent and turn to Christ to obey him? This is the way back to God. Jesus said to his apostles after His resurrection, "Go ye into all the world and preach the good news to every creature. He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved." (Mark 16:16).
Faith and Obedience
"Without faith it is impossible to please God" (Heb rews 11:6). So we must believe for salvation. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved" (Acts 16:31).
Faith leads to repentance, the change of mind toward God, then to obedience. "I've wandered far away from God. Now I'm coming home. The path of sin too long I've trod. Now I'm coming home." (William J. Kirkpatrick)
In answer to the query of those who heard him preach the first gospel sermon after the ascension of Christ, Peter said: "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:38).
He pleaded with these people who had believed the gospel to turn from their sin and obey Christ whom they had slain. Faith leads to the obedience of faith (Romans 16:26).