Psalm 91:14-16 “Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.” (Part II of D.L. Moody’s Sermon “The Ninety-First Psalm”)
II. “I Will Answer” “He shall call upon me, and I will answer him.” There is a chance for all of us to call. The great God that made Heaven and earth has promised, “I will answer him.” If you call on God for deliverance and for victory over sin and every evil, God is not going to turn a deaf ear to your call. I do not care how black your life has been, I do not care what your past record has been, I do not care how disobedient you have been, I do not care how you have back-slidden and wandered; if you really want to come back, God accepts the willing mind, God will hear your prayer, and He will answer.
Listen to the prodigal: “Father, I have sinned!” That was enough; the father took him right to his bosom. The past was blotted out at once. Look at the men on the day of Pentecost. Their hands were dripping with the blood of the Son of God; they had murdered JESUS CHRIST. And what did Peter say to them, “It shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Look at the penitent thief. It might have been that when a little boy, his mother taught him that same passage in Joel, “It shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” As he hung there on the Cross, it flashed into his mind that this was the Lord of glory, and though he was on the very borders of hell, he cried out, “Lord, remember me,” and the answer came right then and there, “To day thou shalt be with me in paradise.” In the morning associated with thieves; in the evening, associated with the purest of Heaven. In the morning, cursing – Matthew and Mark both tell us that those two thieves came out cursing; in the evening, uplifted on high, an inhabitant of Heaven. In the morning, as black as hell could make him; in the evening, not a spot or wrinkle. Why? Because he took God at His word.
My dear friend, if you are unsaved, you just call upon God now, and here is a promise, “I will answer him.”
A few years ago an old returned missionary went to one of our leading hospitals to have a surgical operation performed. He was to go under ether, and it was doubtful whether he would come out or not; he might wake up in another world. He bade adieu to his friends, gave them his farewell blessing – he was a very Godly man – and when the doctor said, “Well, we are ready,” he faced them, and with a calm look, he said: “Would you just wait a minute?” Then he lifted his voice in prayer, “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.” Then, opening his eyes, he said, “Doctor, I am ready,” and passed under the knife, and out from under it into health.
My dear friends, it is a sweet privilege to pray; it is a sweet privilege to be in touch with Heaven, to be in communion with the great God that made Heaven and earth. “I will answer him.” I suppose there is not a Christian in this audience but can say Amen to that. You can say God has answered in the past, and you believe He will do so again. Some people say they cannot call. Perhaps you cannot make an eloquent prayer – I hope that you cannot – I have heard about all the eloquent prayers I want to. But you can say, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner…” Only be sincere, and God will hear your cry. Mark you, there is a sham cry. Mothers understand that; they know when their children cry in earnest, or whether it is a sham cry. Let the child give a real cry of distress, and the mother will leave everything and fly to her child. I have been forty years in Christian work, and I have never known God to disappoint any man or woman who was in earnest about their soul’s salvation. I know lots of people who pretend to be in earnest, but their prayers are never answered.