Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
Our knowledge of the vastness of the heathen world has a distressing influence, our knowledge of the strength of its superstitions, of its false religions. There is the tardiness of the purposes of God, the slowness of His procedure. It may be said that this is characteristic of tits ways and works. Dwell on this thought, that in God we may have the stillness of confidence in regard to the future of His gracious rule among the heathen.
I. THE HEATHEN BELONG TO GOD. He makes the claim, "All souls are Mine!" But "other sheep I have." He is the God of the valleys as well as of the hills. The Asiatic is as nearly related to God as the European, and the African is as dear to Him as an Englishman.
II. IN THE LOWEST AND THE MOST IGNORANT OF THE HEATHEN THERE IS A CAPACITY FOR GOD. When we speak of "the heathen world" we know that we are to distinguish between some races and others. Among some we find old civilizations, philosophies and religions; China and Japan are different from Africa; India and Ceylon are different from some of the islands of the seas. But the people who have the greatest knowledge and civilization are as much in need of the Gospel as those most deeply sunk in the abyss of barbarism and ignorance. "Leave them alone to work out their own salvation if they need it, by and by they will evolve into something better." Yes, we are thankful for the conviction that they will evolve into a higher state, but there are means essential for this purpose. The same Gospel is needed by the most advanced as by the most degraded, by the barbarians of Melita, and the philosophers of Athens, by the painted savage and the proud Brahmin. There is a capacity in the very lowest for God. When you deal with the dullest, the most stolid, the most ignorant, only get beneath the crust of habit, formed by years of sensuality, indifference, and prejudice, and you will find a home for the truth — a something within responding to the Word without. "I will be exalted in the earth." We are warranted in saying that the victories already achieved are such as to encourage and strengthen confidence; but our firmest ground of trust is this, we know that He is God.
Parallel VersesKJV: Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.