Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
Those who do the best work in the world's redemption, and yet may never preach a sermon, have had a "call" to accomplish it. The "call" may have been felt only as an overwhelming and disinterested desire to accomplish some noble end, but it has been as truly there as if seraphim had announced it. Such great movements as the anti-slavery crusade are full of instances. Of Thomas Clarkson it is recorded that when about twenty-four years of age, after having composed and read a Latin prize essay at Cambridge University, he travelled to London to assist in founding a society for the suppression of the slave trade. Overwhelmed with the awfulness of the traffic he had been denouncing, he alighted from his horse, and sitting by the roadside prayed that God would raise up some devoted champion of the oppressed African. Suddenly the thought flashed into his mind that he should offer himself to this cause. How he, under this overmastering feeling, ultimately surrendered the clerical life for which he was preparing, how he laboured till the slave trade was excised from the body politic, and how he was followed in a true "apostolic succession" by William Wilberforce, in the further attack upon domestic slavery, is recorded in the pages of history. Wilberforce, too, passed through times of deep self-conflict till the necessary new habits of mind and life were formed. He, in turn, gave place to such men as Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton and Joseph Sturge, who also were "called" and "ordained" by the Spirit of God to the Christlike work of securing liberty to the captive. Prison reformers and uplifters of the criminal, like John Howard, Elizabeth Fry, and Sarah Martin, passed through periods of probation, when there seemed to be in their minds "a prophetic stir of coming duties outside the usual sphere" of their daily lives.
Parallel VersesKJV: Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.